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Review: Chronicle (2012)

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Seems like every week we get a new spin on the superhero movie. We got the dark kind (Dark Knight), the family friendly (Under Dog), looney (Mystery Men), and drunk (Hancock). We even have a superhero romantic comedy (My Super Ex-Girlfriend). What we finally are getting in 2012 is the found footage superhero movie (ala Cloverfield).

Chronicle trails the creation and strengthening of superpowers by 3 high school students. Each one is very different in personalities, but their newly founded abilities (telekinesis, flying, etc.) has bonded the 3 together. The plot follows Andrew (Dane DeHaan) the most, with his abusive father, and his constant recording of the events (the footage we watch). As their abilities grow stronger, things grow more and more out of hand, with some going more power hungry than others.

The biggest problem most people have with found footage movies is the shaky camera induced motion sickness many people get with them. A nice script addition makes that problem disappear when the main character is able to float the camera around him. You still get the feeling like it is a home movie, but with more professional camera ops. With that out of the way, I was surprised at how enjoyable and entertaining Chronicle was. It builds slowly, but you get to know the characters, where they are coming from, and how they respond to their new gifts. The building of the plot only makes you want to see how it all goes down in the end. For as small scale the whole movie was, the finale was surprisingly huge and filled with some awesome action. And while the acting from DeHaan seemed a tad over the top at times, it only played in to how insecure and hurt his character was. Chronicle was definitely one of the better films so far in the year, and should not be overlooked.

My Rating: A-


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