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PopTop reviews: 'Found footage' thrillers offer shaky storytelling

Published May 12, 2012 5:26 pm

This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2012, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

GRADES: C/D-

DVD • This is what "The Blair Witch Project" has wrought: filmmakers who think they can employ no-name actors, shoot disjointed scenes with shaky handheld cameras and pretend it's a "found footage" documentary. Two examples of the genre hit DVD shelves Tuesday: "Chronicle," in which three high-schoolers find an alien thingy that gives them superpowers; and "The Devil Inside," another exorcism horror movie. In both movies, the mock-documentary format serves to mask the predictability of the stories. "Chronicle" is, at least, clever with its camera tricks and offers a real ending. "The Devil Inside" just piles up gory scenes before jerking the audience's chain with a too-abrupt finale.

Sean P. Means