There’s something about a horror film that I find comforting. I’ll watch any horror movie and generally know what I’m getting myself into. There’s the spooky introduction to the setting and main characters, maybe a good first death or two. Then our innocent hero(ine) gets introduced and we watch as they try to figure out what’s happening. They either do or they don’t and then the end. Scares happen in between, sometimes. Horror films are my comfort movies, as silly as that might sound.
So when a movie comes along that isn’t just one of those typical scarers I like it and am doubly frightened by it. This has happened before with movies like Funny Games, Martyrs, and Repulsion. These films hold nothing back. Nothing is sacred. You don’t know what’s going to happen and you don’t know why it’s happening. This isn’t The Woman in Black (a pretty good movie that is super generic). Entrance is the first film by the directing duo of Dallas Richard Hallam and Patrick Horvath and it shows at times. You can see some camera shadows and sometimes it seems to get a little out of control. But they do a pretty damn good job of setting up something shocking. The first hour or so of this movie is kind of standard mumblecore. We have a young woman (played quite nicely by Suziey Block) transplanted from Minnesota to LA, struggling to find something worth caring about outside her dog. She has her daily routine and we get lulled watching her. Sometimes some strange things happen. A guy yells at her on the street, a car follows her on her way back home. She hears strange sounds in the middle of the night. It’s all so creepy because it is so very real. The point of the mumblecore genre is to present real people acting in a real way, and that works to up the tension of the things that are just slightly off. Then, in the last 20 minutes or so, shit gets crazy.
I’m not going to ruin what happens for you, because I think the film is worth a watch and it’d be mean to rob you of the excitement. There are some things that I can say, though. The last shot of the film lasts about 15 minutes and is quite scary. The camera shows little, just enough to give us a sense of what’s happening. Our heroine is terrified and so was I. Sticking with her perspective (if not her exact point of view) keeps us feeling like we’re out of control. And we are, that’s the point. The movie is about alienation, how being alone is the scariest thing you can be. Even surrounded by friends we aren’t safe. Who are they, anyways? They can’t protect us and we can’t protect them. If things are going to happen you’re just going to have to watch. That’s all we can do.