Pious mute Tom (Evan Dumouchel) goes on a sabbatical to one of those remote lake houses that are all the rage with kids ages 18 to 54. Seems all well and good, but the location is an odd choice for our hero seeing as he had a water related tragedy as a youth that resulted in his current malady.
Once he makes the scene he meets Al (MacLeod Andrews), whose husband drowned in the local lake… as have many. Al thinks there’s a mystery afoot… a mystery perhaps related to a woman named Nina (Margaret Ying Drake) who often swims to the cabin and chats with tom who has become all cat with a shiny object with the lass, who as fate and this movie would have it may be more than she seems.
So what makes The Siren worth your time? Let’s start with the performances of Dumouchel, Drake, and Andrews. Dumouchel is absolutely amazing to watch in a wordless performance that relies completely on body language and expressions to relate his feelings and emotions… from taciturn sadness to fascination, all displayed with equal aplomb, Drake offers a performance steeped in desire and shadowed intentions in equal measure, and Andrews absolutely enbodies heartbreak and misery.
I know, it sounds like a bunch of sad-sackin’, and it is for sure, but this slow burn tale of loss manages to really stick with ya, even after the credits have rolled, and that is a testament to the fine actors mentioned above working from a powerful script from writer/director Perry Blackshear.
Speaking of Blackshear, he also manages to give The Siren a real sense of unease and doom that makes the entire affair a real step-up from your normal creature feature fare, but has also included elements of romance and even a splash of lightheartedness among the tragedy that just makes this one something special.On the downside, if you are looking for a traditional creature-feature this one may leave you cold.
along with the powerful feature, Dark sky Films have also included some solid bonus material on this DVD release including: audio commentaries with Blackshear and Drake, and Andrews and Dumouchel, as well as an interview with Blackshear and the film’s trailer.
The Siren is a character piece imbued with dark fairy tale elements rather than a monster going amok affair, but for those that want something a tad deep and emotional along with their preternatural elements, this picture will well and truly satisfy.