MOVIE REVIEW: Chronicle

Wil Avitt
Wil Avitt's picture

I walked into Chronicle with certain expectations. I expected to see an ok action movie. I expected to see yet another rip-off of the TV series Heroes (another because the 2009 film Push was the first). I expected to see an exciting movie that I would probably buy on blu-ray and watch again. I expected the movie to be derivative, a rehash, good enough but not remarkable by any means. What I did not expect, and what I actually got, was to be blown away by the experience.

Chronicle tells the story of three troubled high school students who find a glowing green object (kinda like Kryptonite, but not really) buried in the ground that gives them telekinetic abilities upon touching it. The more they use their abilities, the stronger they get. Kinda like building a muscle. It causes them pain and discomfort (not to mention nose bleeds), but their abilities get stronger. The interesting part is that the more they do use their abilities, being psychic in nature, the stronger and more intense the aggressive side of their personalities becomes. Sort of like what happened to the girls in The Craft.

Wikipedia describes the visual style of Chronicle as a "found footage" film, like The Blair Witch Project, Paranormal Activity or Apollo 18. Usually these movies tick me off to no end, but usually the producers try to perpetrate a falsehood, claiming the footage to actually have been found somewhere (like Miramax did with Apollo 18, and which never fools anyone besides the great unwashed of the country's lowest intellectual denomenator). I didn't even know this movie was shot documentary style until I actually sat through it, and it seemed to work better in this movie. Also, being shot documentary style, made the special effects look so much better than they normally do in a more cinematic film.

Chronicle exceeds expectations in every way, especially in acting (with not a single "star" name in sight, though I wouldn't be surprised to see some of the names go on to notoriety in the future, especially Dane DeHaan who plays Andrew) and in direction. This movie should have been saved for the summer, however knowing the summer schedule, the producers were wise not to try and play in that sandbox this year of all years. But it was certainly good enough to have contended in summer competition. Chronicle is a great movie, and I highly recommend it. Go see this movie, then meet back here in the comments section due south.

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