Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
Director: New Blood Entertainment
Genres: Horror, Science Fiction & Fantasy
This film is based on the true events that occurred on October 31st, 2004 in Saratoga County. Five Canadian filmmakers set out on a supernatural expedition to film a documentary on the Saratoga Homestead Asylum. Unfortunat... more »
Similarly Requested DVDs
An okay horror "film"
Andrew Farrar | Tallahassee, Florida United States | 02/19/2008
(3 out of 5 stars)
"When something is based on a true story or actual events in the case of the supernatural one must approach with a certain skepticism. This was my frame of mind after purchasing "The Expedition", and upon viewing the film my stance hasn't changed.
The basic plot is this, five friends decide to do a documentary film on an abandoned asylum in Saratoga (just why is bit hard to ascertain but can most likely be chalked up to being young and wanting to do something different) a place which has no history of "hauntings" to begin with. Yet upon entering the deteriorating building with graffiti covered walls and plaster strewn floors a mysterious force slowly makes itself known to the group. If this was truly based on a true story then the ghosts were nice enough to the film crew not to scare them right away but gradually increase the tempo the longer they remained in the building.
Before I get onto the negatives I'd like to start off with the films positives, firstly the five film makers are great on camera and really add a sense of authenticity to the film. Their performances seem to have taken a page from the Blair Witch Project in that there is no rehearsed lines to say but everything is done on the fly with cameras rolling. Secondly, the music added to the scenes of them exploring the structures dark corridors and crumbling rooms really helps the film along while at the same time doesn't detract from the viewers experience. Thirdly, the asylum itself is great to explore with the film makers as they trudge their way through its decaying interior. I've always been fascinated with abandoned structures and this point alone made me pony up the funds to buy this film.
Now to the negatives, unfortunately there are "reenactment" sequences that take place after the "expedition" into the asylum. Cut in between "actual" footage are shots at a police station where a couple of the film makers are being interrogated by a detective about "what really happened" in the asylum. Its a way for the director to narrate whats going on and why certain things happen on the film and perhaps it was needed. But the acting during these scenes is one of major setbacks for this film, any sense of immersion is snatched away while actors who don't seem comfortable with saying scripted lines try to advance the plot.
Next is the "supernatural" part of the film that what could of been its strongest points turns out to be its weakest. For a supposedly "real" film the actors are great at displaying real reactions to things that go bump in the night. Yet where the film trips up is when visual "hints" are dropped for the viewer that "hey, there is something spooky here". By this I mean having the camera get "fuzzy" or interference when filming in a room. The effect itself is so out of place I couldn't help but roll my eyes. Other effects include calls for help from an unseen film maker that has gone missing and a ghost girl in a white dress that seems to stalk the crew. What is it with ghost girls in dresses anyway? Was their a memo I missed?
The final negative was what made this a four star to a three star and that was the lead film makers (we'll call him Ed since I forget his name) insistence on filming everything. I found it incredibly difficult to believe that his best friend goes missing and is calling for help yet Ed cant stop lugging his camera around as he searches for him. Only thing that kept running through my mind was "drop the damn camera and call the cops you doofus"."
Blair Witch, revisited... shamefully so.
The Practical Reviewer | Newport Beach, CA | 08/06/2008
(1 out of 5 stars)
"Here's the bottom line up front: this movie is a blatant and shameless rip-off of the two Blair Witch movies. DO NOT RENT IT, unless you just want to see the Blair Witch movies in slightly different clothes. Let's put it this way - if a soda company made a cola with the identical recipe to Coca Cola, they would be sued for infringement, right? Well, consider THIS video to be that soda company, and BLAIR WITCH I & II to be Coca Cola.
Let's compare - Blair Witch vs. The Expedition: the premise of the movie being a group of kids setting out to determine if a place is haunted? Yes. Claims the movie is made up in large part of actual footage shot by the kids? Yup. First scenes of two of the kids videotaping each other and making silly comments about it? Yes. Upon arrival at the location, interview locals about whether the place is haunted? Of course.
Now, lest you think there was some originality... let's compare the other scenes to Blair Witch II! Opens with a kid being interrogated by the police over being responsible for the deaths of the others? Yes. Repeated interviews with same to reveal the plot line? Yup.
And it just goes on and on... so won't bore you with any more of the details. I think you get the picture.