Exists (2014)

Happy Day 25 of my #31DaysOfHorror you guys! Based on the stats, it does seem like people have been finding their way here which is great. Please feel free to share your thoughts, movie suggestions and whatever you’d like in the comments. Or you can play along on Instagram with the tag #BarleyDoesHorror

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Well, I’ll be honest you guys. after so many disappointing movies this month, I really was starting to feel beaten down. I had heard about this one, and after my enjoyment of Willow Creek, I really thought that we might be on to something. So, here’s the plot to get things started :

A group of friends who venture into the remote Texas woods for a party weekend find themselves stalked by Bigfoot.

Sounds good right? Yeah, you’re god damn right it does. I would like to mention before we even get started, THIS IS A FOUND FOOTAGE MOVIE. If you’re ire is sparked by this kind of movie without even having seen it, then this review is not for you. I have said time and time again that I am a real fan of found footage when its done well, and I fully acknowledge that it often is NOT done well. This one, on the other hand, is done well and is a whole fuck of a lot of fun.

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This one comes to us from director Eduardo Sanchez, who brought us The Blair Witch Project and more recently, a pretty cool, underrated movie called Lovely Molly and one of the funnest segments from V/H/S 2. So, it was really nice that he has carried on his tradition of pretty entertaining movies. He’s also teamed up with writer Jamie Nash again, who penned both the V/H/S segment and Lovely Molly. Hopefully this is going to continue to be a positive partnership. The cast is pretty good as well, albeit a little bit much at times, but that has more to do with the characters than with the actors performances. I would have loved to have seen TJ Miller in the role of Brian, but Chris Osborn really was super likable either way.

One quick fun little casting fact : this movie’s Sasquatch is played by Brian Steele. Brian Steele has played a Sasquatch before, in the 1993 TV series Harry &  The Hendersons. So, clearly Harry has run off into the woods, and become a pretty angry dude. For you fine folks who love to add some continuity to your movies.

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I have to say, the story for this movie is great fun, and it really doesn’t waste any time in getting started. This really is a moment of these character’s lives, so there’s really not much time forcing you to know these characters, and you really are thrown into this group and taken for this ride. While I’m sure that some of you out there will complain a bit about the look of Sasquatch,  I really didn’t mind. It’s maybe a bit silly, but when I really thought about how I’d respond seeing that exact thing in the woods in real life and realized i would spend ZERO minutes thinking “Oh, that’s a silly looking beast” and ALL of the minutes shitting in my pants. Everything really is forgivable, and the movie is exciting and frightening.

All in all, Exists is a really great addition to the ever-flooding found-footage market. It’s creepy, intense, and entertaining from start to finish. It even has a pretty satisfying ending, and frankly, I just really enjoyed the movie. I am giving it a strong recommend and also would like to strongly urge you to check out Bobcat Goldthwait’s Willow Creek as well. The two would make for a hell of a double feature.

FINAL GRADE : B+

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