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YellowBrickRoad (2010) Review

The story of YellowBrickRoad goes something like this: A team of investigators are assembled to re-track the trail of where the entire population of Friar, New Hampshire mysteriously disappeared. None of the approx 300 people from Friar where ever discovered alive, they either died from the elements or where cruelly slaughtered. The army investigated this phenomenon and subsequently covered it up. The new team will find themselves up against forces unknown as they endeavour into the wilderness to discover the fates of the lost citizens.

Of course YellowBrickRoad is a total mockumentary, there’s no reality to the whole thing but the movie does take itself seriously. There’s an attempt to be a real psychological thriller. Well sadly this movie is not so great. I’ll mention it’s more positive parts first. The acting. The actors in this movie all put in quality performances in their respective parts. The mania the characters find themselves experiencing is performed believably even if the characters aren’t particularly memorable. In this regard YBR is solid.

The cinematography is really quite good also. The way in which the surrounding countryside is depicted really helps to embolden a strong feeling of isolation (and beauty) which juxtaposed with the characters situation works quite well.

Sadly the good points end there. This movie commits one major sin that i simply can’t stand. It doesn’t deliver on the mystery. Clearly the premise of the movie and the events that occur to the characters are really intriguing but almost none of these issues are ever resolved. It’s difficult to explain in full without spoiling the movie but if you do decide to watch this you’ll come away at the end with only questions and no answers. It’s easy to build mystery in a movie, seriously. What’s hard though is resolving a mystery to satisfaction and i’ve noticed a disturbing trend these days to just leave things open ended. Well, quite frankly, i think that’s shit. I may well stand on my own with my opinion here but when you finish a movie with only questions and almost no answers that’s just sloppy storytelling and YellowBrickRoad suffers badly from this.

Sadly this movie isn’t that scary either, nor is there that much gore (hardly any) the last half of the movie just dragged out. I feel this movie could have been condensed to make a more streamlined view but as it stands it just plods along and the ending (which would make David Lynch proud) makes no obvious sense whatsoever.

I’m really finding it difficult to recommend this one. Heck even if you could pick it up cheap I still wouldn’t recommend it. Definitely one best caught on TV, though there’s bound to be something better to watch than this. Avoid.

Movie Details

Director: Jesse Holland
Writers: Jesse Holland, Andy Mitton
Actors: Cassidy Freeman, Anessa Ramsey, Clark Freeman, Laura Heisler
Release Year: 2010