Fantasia 2012: Resolution will surprise and confound
Directed by Aaron Moorhead and Justin Benson
An exploration of urban legends, examining our eternal relationship with storytelling, Resolution begins as the story of two friends. Michael, whose life is on the right path, receives a disturbing video of his friend Chris, and decides to go to the backwoods in order to take one more chance at saving him.
What sets Resolution apart from other horror films? It is not immediately evident, perhaps because it is not particularly obvious which genre it fits into. Multi-faceted and all too human, the film takes what is essentially the premise of an exploitation film and transforms it into a credible narrative of two young adults battling personal demons. Chris’ problems stand out on the surface, his addiction to crack has crippled his life, and he has alienated almost all of his friends and family. Michael, on the other hand, seems entirely put together but the isolated locale and being in close contact with Chris, it seems as though his life begins to unravel before our eyes.
Instead of relying on typical horror tropes as a means of building tension, the atmosphere is created by distorting the familiar and by crafting interruptions in the narrative flow. Without ever crossing the line of improbability, the filmmakers are able to create a world that is credibly absurd… not quite removed from our reality, but almost a version that exists beyond the looking glass. The characters themselves are disturbed by these instances, but also accepting of them. Early on, when Michael is awakened in the middle of the night by a strange girl looming in the window, he is reasonably disturbed, however when assured by Chris there is nothing to worry about, he goes back to sleep.