Desolation begins with a woman dousing herself in alcohol and lighting herself ablaze in front of a rolling camera…talk about your all over hot foot, eh fiends?!! We then switch gears to focus on sad sack hotel worker Katie (Dominik García-Lorido) who soon begins hanging out with movie star Jay ( Brock Kelly) who’s in town to film some sort of movie or some such shit. Anyway, he’s unhappy being a star, she’s unhappy just being Katie, and the two funsters become chummy (a.k.a. they take the express train to Bone Town). Long story short; Jay brings Katie to Hell A. where she begins trading her memories for fortune and fame, and finds herself just a step away from the edge of a fall…you could say caught between heaven and hell even (where’s the girl I knew 15 minutes ago?).
Before long, Katie begins seeing ghostly visions within the confines of Jay’s nearly deserted (and creepy A.F.) apartment building, and is being recorded continuously by someone for some reason. Add in a weird priest (a great performance by Raymond J. Barry), a bucket load of pills, masked assailants, more pills, same sex digital rape (like with fingers, not some VR Cybo man shit…and it should be noted that they keep things heart smart by using EVOO), off-kilter cops, less pills, and plenty of good ol’ “what the hell what now?” to ensure you will never know exactly what is up until the very end!
Desolation is one hell of a slow burn fright flick! The plot gets stranger and stranger as it unfolds, the twists and suspense are tight and outta sight, and the performance of Dominik García-Lorido as the heavily medicated Katie is pretty damn stellar as she goes from a gal sleepwalking through life to a woman hell bent on making sense of the insanity that has become her life. Also of note are the slick cinematography and on-point score that add plenty of arcane atmosphere and ambiance to this televised terror tale.
On the downside, if you like your horror biz fast paced, Desolation may not be the picture for you, as it starts off on the mellow side and rambles forward picking up plenty of suspenseful steam as it goes. I do have to add that no matter how long it takes to get to where it’s going, the film is never boring, and the story remains engaging throughout. Along the same ends, some of you creeps may be turned off with the lead character of Katie, as she is relatively emotionally flat lined for much of the picture (as she has been successfully “evened out” by pharmaceuticals). again, it serves the character, and the picture, but it may turn off some viewers before they get to her eventually emotional outpouring.
All in all, Desolation is a surreal mind-fuck of a film with enough guessing games to keep audiences puzzled, and enough suspense to keep them on the edge of their seats, and comes highly recommended if you are a fan of flicks like Starry Eyes or Neon Demon!
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