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'Lake Mungo' (2008) - Joel Anderson.

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  • 'Lake Mungo' (2008) - Joel Anderson.

    This superlative, stylishly shot, grief-laden Australian shocker has an unusually hypnotic quality that drew me deep into its eerie, nightmarishly unfathomable mystery! A bleak, morbidly fascinating, deliciously slow-churning, spectrally sinister creep-out from down under which relied on atmosphere rather than facile gimmickry! On occasion, poor Alice Palmer's grievous torment felt uncomfortably genuine, upsettingly close to my own bouts of depression. Director Joel Anderson's glacially gripping doom-fest included some especially oppressive, expertly eerie interludes, wherein Alice's paralysing sense of despair over her apparently inexorable demise seem inextricably linked to the distressing, precognitive events that befell her at the ill-omened Lake Mungo resort, the desolated location's alien, other-worldly topography adding much to the film's emotionally devastating impact! And the heart wrenchingly earnest scenes where the visibly traumatized Palmer family fearfully await the fateful news of their daughter Alice has a grimly resonant quality you rarely see in the populist, jump-scare saturated genre films of today. 'Lake Mungo' is a sombre, diabolically disquieting descent into one of contemporary horror cinema's more memorably hateful hauntings! The immaculate performances, relatable humanity, nervy, discordant score and intelligent, compassionate film-making have yielded a bona fide modern horror classic!

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