Friday, May 25, 2012

"Chronicle" (2012)

This is story that feels like it has been told dozens of times. What would you do if you suddenly had superhuman powers? Even worse, what would a bunch of teenage boys do with such powers?

“Chronicle” attempts to give us a realistic, found-footage account of three boys who become superhuman. The popular, football-captain type; the smart, too cool for school philosopher; and his loser cousin find a MacGuffin in a hole and gain the ability to move things—including themselves—with their minds.

The story is told from the perspective of the loser who has a dying mother and an abusive father. Predictably, he uses his new powers in less than admirable ways, but the story almost feels like it tries to justify his actions as more reaction than evil impulse.

It is the cousin, well versed in philosophy and ethics as he is, that tries to provide them with a purpose and control over their new found powers. The 88 minute film doesn’t overstay its welcome and presents a simple if predictable message: Abused people will use power to abuse, and introspective, well-read people are the only people who can handle it. Hmmm. That’s deep.

Something should be said about the aesthetic. As it is a huge part of the film. This “found-footage” type of film is really wearing thin. Here, we get the conceit that the camera can be anywhere since the kid is manipulating it with his telekinetic powers. That being said it is distracting. One is constantly questioning the decision making process the boy is employing in what he films and how he films it. Also, who edited the film together?

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