Found. – micro-budget horror that hit’s the nail on the… uh… head
Written by: Todd Rigney (Novel) and Scott Schirmer (Screenplay)
Directed by: Scott Schirmer
Starring: Gavin Brown, Ethan Philbeck, Phyliss Munro, and Louie Lawless
Marty (Brown) is a young man who’s life is not exactly delightful. He is picked on at school, lives under the roof of a distracted mother and a racist father with major anger issues, and just discovered a severed human head in his brother’s bowling ball bag. Like I said… not delightful.
“Found.” is a micro-budget horror film from first time feature director Scott Schirmer. I always like to keep that whole budget thing in mind when watching a movie that was made for under $10,000. I mean, that’s got to be tough. About half way through “Found.” though I forgot all about the meager means from which it was made. Instead I found myself focusing on the incredible job Schirmer and his DP did at creating a film that had a beautiful contrast between dark,disturbing story and the sun drenched, suburban setting. Even in Marty’s family home we see the two boy’s rooms filled with horror movie posters, gory sketches, and well… human heads, and yet outside of those rooms is your typical middle American house. These contradictory themes set an eerie undertone to a movie that is, on it’s surface, as disturbing as movies get.
While some of the minor roles are a bit choppy (again… tiny budget) Brown and Philbeck do a great job. Especially, Philbeck who really gets into his role as a very disturbed amateur serial killer. Brown too does a commendable job at giving Marty just enough darkness to taint his sweet, innocent, mop haired look. I should also mention Louie Lawless who does such a good job at being an abusive, tyrant of a father that I wanted to punch him through the screen multiple times.
Throughout the film, there is an unsettling quality. It is due not only to the disturbing images or the grisly subject matter, but the constant feeling that things are going to get a lot worse… and they do. There are also countless winks to horror buffs. From the posters on the wall, to the video store much of the film seems to be paying respects to it’s predecessors in a fun intelligent way. But, that is the only ray of lighthearted sunshine you will get, and it offers little comfort.
There will certainly be many people who have a hard time watching “Found.” Some scenes are exceptionally messed up. Most of these scenes are in the movie in the movie “Headless” which had spawned it’s own feature length film. The apparent inspiration for Steve’s killings, “Headless” shows brutal violence and sexually depraved acts. NOT… for the faint of heart.
Overall though, this is a brutal yet effective indie horror. High marks for originality, cinematography, and the acting of it’s two young stars. Watch it… If you dare.