Reed Alexander's Review of 'Digging Up The Marrow (2014)'
Digging up my fan boner...
Great mocumentary. Adam Green makes the fan film of a lifetime. His movie suggests that, in our world, monsters may be real. We all know we want it to be true and he plays on that marvelously.
It's really just a lot of fun. It comes off as pretty natural since Adam and Ray aren't really trying to act through the movie, more just trying to let their reactions flow naturally. That's actually something I can appreciate and making something fake seem like a normal day on the job for Adam and Ray is actually impressive. It can even be said that it's harder to pretend you're not acting than it is to actually act. I guess that's up to interpretation though.
The best points of this movie is how much it pokes fun at itself and it's very concept. It surrounds a character William Dekker who you can never be sure is crazy, telling the truth, or just messing with Adam and Ray. They do a good job of walking the line between hoax and genuine discovery. They make ironic self commentary on just how ridiculous they whole documentary is. They joke about how this is something they always wanted to believe in as children. And Dekker is a quirky weirdo who carries a lot of the silliness of the movie.
If you're a horror fan and you always wanted to believe in monsters, this is the movie for you.
There were a few things I was a little disappointed in. There was very little interaction with the creatures from The Marrow. There really couldn't be with the setup, and it would have ruined a lot of the point of the movie, but it was so disappointing. You just want more of them. The horror fanboy in me was left wanting. They're even kind of fascinating. You just want more of them, and all you really get is multiple teasers, a few lame jump scares, and one full on shaky camera confrontation.
Now I've said in the past that shaky camera is a terrible medium save a few circumstances when it's appropriate. Here, it is appropriate. Adam and Ray really didn't have a huge budget for a monster spectacular and they needed to expo their rubber monsters in a way that built the atmosphere. That is an appropriate reason to use shaky camera. Also, it was a mocumentary so it wouldn't make much sense to use anything else. There were a few times when they were being gratuitous with the shaky camera, but they never overdid it.
Another thing that was kinda silly. This really was just a huge ripoff of "Night Breed" which they even make reference too in the movie. You kinda have to though. There's really no other way to express the idea that 'Monsters are real' without paying homage to the franchise that coined the idea.
Another thing that kinda bothered me. So, by the end, it's more than clear that Dekker's son is one of the mutants from The Marrow. You never see his son, mind you, it's only implied. But there's no development here. They just hint to it, never go anywhere with it, and kinda just abandon it. Also, there's a lot about this story that doesn't add up. So, apparently, Dekker's son is chained up in his storage room... but then he also goes to The Marrow to cry over its entrance and frequently goes there to feed something. You get the impression that the thing in the storage room and the thing at the entrance of the Marrow are both Dekker's son but they only ever reference one and he can't be in both places at the same time. Maybe Dekker's son had a monster girlfriend?
But yeah, totally worth it. Just on the horror fan cameos alone, it's worth it. Great movie.