Ghost Light (ghost_light) wrote,
Ghost Light

Hooptober Attempt Review #4

Southbound (2015)

Synopsis: Interlocking tales of highway terror revolve around malevolent spirits at a truck stop, a mysterious traveller, a car accident and a home invasion.

I almost decided to review these out of order so I could write about this one as soon as I saw it. I'm glad I didn't, though, because the more I've thought about it the less I like this movie.

I read a couple reviews (something in me just didn't trust this movie was really that good) and they all pretty much agreed this is a classic example of an anthology format: two connected stories bookending other shorts of various quality. The trouble is, the story all the critics pointed to as the best and strongest was a giant step further into torture porn than I like to go. The concept was strong - motorist hits a girl on this stretch of highway and the folks he thinks are 911 operators trying to help him save her guide him to an abandoned hospital and talk him through increasingly invasive procedures which end in him killing the girl. Not my cup of tea. At all.

What this movie does do well, though, is blend the stories so it takes you a moment to realize you are in a new segment. That was refreshing. Instead of a narrator popping up with a moral, the motorist drives past a woman at a phone booth (just as we realize she was one of the ones convincing him to torture that poor girl) and the camera slowly follows her into the bar where the next story begins. That felt very organic but it ended up not being enough to elevate the film once I thought more about the individual films than the structure.

Available on: Hulu, Amazon Prime, and Kanopy

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