I had the opportunity to watch Aaron Mirtes’ horror film ‘Clowntergeist’. First things first, I enjoyed it. There were a few things in the film that hurt the movie a bit, but it is a good flick. I admit that I am a little done with the whole clown thing, but I would recommend this movie.
Written by Director Aaron Mirtes and starring Brittany Belland, Aaron Mirtes, and Madeleine Heil. This fim follows Emma (Belland), a college student with a crippling fear of clowns, must come face to face with her worst fear when an evil spirit in the body of a clown terrorizes the small town she is living in for the summer.
There were some really great things in the movie! Vile messages written on balloons that appeared out of nowhere were great and used exceptionally well. The demon speaking through the radio was a great thought. There were uses, and I loved it, of well-known urban myths or campfire stories such as Emma lying in bed and telling the dog to stop licking her hand from underneath the bed while the camera pans over to see the dog in the other room. Things like this happened a couple of times, but could have been used as a very successful theme through the movie. To only use them two of three times was not enough and think a great opportunity was missed.
The acting was surprisingly good. Special shout out to Tom Seidman who played Pops and really stole the film for me. Belland was great at being an approachable girl with a fun personality and the odd idiosyncratic behavior that all people have. I was pulled in to the characters for the most part and they even made the lines that were a little forced work in their fun awkwardness.
The movie started really great! It was suspenseful, unsettling, eerie, and a beautiful set up to a promising story. However, my main issue with the film is that questions that the intro used to create the feeling of terror were never answered throughout the movie. The questions of “why” are things happening? Why is Emma afraid of clowns? Why is the demon in the clown? Why do they all of the sudden know he is a demonic clown? Without answers to these answers (or at least some back story), the film felt more like a short story rather than a feature film. For example, the driving force of one character was the repetition of “it’s all your fault” but that is never explained and makes little sense. A demonic clown killed your daughter, how is that the dad’s fault?
Honestly, the biggest issue that I had with the film was the lack of parallel between murders in different years. There is a huge focus on people knowing exactly what day and time they will be attacked (delivered on a special balloon) but the second victim is attacked over and over prior to the date and time…all the while showing the time that her attack was supposed to come. There was such an opportunity for the clown to destroy her mentally before the actual attack time, but it was wasted by repeated attacks before she was told she would be attacked.
Overall, I enjoyed the movie. It was fun and well done. There were many things in it that could be improved, but it was okay. Not great, not terrible, simply okay. If you are looking for something that is entertaining and you have an affinity for clowns, check it out.