Synchronic: The BRWC Review. By Luke Foulder-Hughes.
Synchronic was the first film from Moorhead & Benson that I have seen. Having heard great things about the directors, I was expecting more from this film. However, that’s not to say I didn’t think that the majority of the film was pretty good and explored some interesting concepts, as it was an experience that isn’t too similar to a lot of Sci-Fi/Horror films that are released nowadays. The movie is about two paramedics from New Orleans who discover a designer drug linked to deaths that are incredibly unusual and have other worldly effects.
Firstly, I’ll mention my favourite thing about Synchronic, the score. It was nothing short of brilliant and fit its purpose in the film perfectly, as well as providing us with a sense of dread about what’s to come. Jimmy LaValle, the composer, is a frequent collaborator with Moorhead & Benson which is always great as he has a full idea of the directors’ vision and can orchestrate his music to perfection. Another thing I really love in Synchronic was the chemistry between Dorman and Mackie, they had a really believable friendship when on screen and you actually care about the characters and their motives through all the tough situations they endure.
Their chemistry contributed to their good performances they both give, particularly Mackie, who is at the best I have seen him. Dorman was pretty good, however not on the level of Mackie. This being said, all the supporting actors’ performances were forgettable at best, some of the acting on show was just bad from some of the cast.
The technical aspects in Synchronic are quite good, particularly considering the low budget that the directors had to work with. The cinematography is relatively decent, with some shots being excellent and nice to look at, particularly in the final scene. The writing is quite poor in my opinion, and doesn’t feel natural at all. The scenes with Dorman’s character, Dennis, and his family stood out to me as feeling very fake, as the writing did not feel real at all, as well as the actress playing his daughter poorly delivering her lines.
Another technical thing I think was really well done was the injuries to the characters. They were incredibly graphic and looked so realistic, meaning that if you aren’t good with graphic injury detail Synchronic is not a movie for you. The charred body looked like it came out of ‘Se7en’, which I think does graphic and realistic injury the best of any film ever.
Synchronic takes on a difficult job as it introduces this concept unlike anything I’ve ever seen, it’s unusual for modern horror films to try something that is so ambitious and confusing to understand. What I like about the way the directors took this on was that they didn’t bog us down with exposition and made it so that we experience the film and don’t try to understand what’s happening, much like something by Stanley Kubrick. However, I feel this concept could’ve been done better with a bigger budget. The budget is one of the main restrictions of the film as I feel they could’ve expanded this and made a big blockbuster with a larger budget.
Synchronic is definitely a film worth checking out when it officially releases to VOD or hopefully when it gets a proper theatrical release. The concept is really interesting and, despite the fact it wasn’t perfectly orchestrated, is done in a decent way by Moorhead & Benson. If you are a fan of Moorhead & Benson or the Sci-Fi/Horror genre you’ll likely enjoy this film.
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