The Feed Movie Review

The Feed Movie Review
Directed by Steve Gibson, starring Seth Drick, Chip Facka, Brianna Healey, Jody Horn, Lloyd Kaufman
Updated: 09-29-2011
I admit to being roped into Celebrity Ghost Stories on the Biography Channel (which is an incredibly well-edited program; surely that's its lure, as the subject matter doesn't really interest me), but aside from that I never watch those sort of "reality" programs. So why'd I like The Feed?
So, yeah — it is modeled after one of the SyFy Channel's flagship shows, Ghost Hunters, but The Feed (which goes along with the "Ghost Chasers") is one of the better found footage films I've seen of late. (Not counting its bigger budget brothers, of course; I'm talking Rec, Paranormal Activity, et al.) In a sea of shaky-cam swill, The Feed surfaces as one of the more memorable and better-crafted.
Set in a haunted old movie theater, the fictional show's host leads the way as his skeleton crew follows into the gloom (and of course, their doom). Interspersed between the usual prattle ("And over here, folks, is where the body was found!") are interviews with The Brenway Theater's current manager, some of the employees, townsfolk who remember the awful incident and the theater's first, long-dead owner (one elderly lady recalls knowing him when she was a child, and how "He would let us sit in his lap while we played the organ."), bits and pieces from a documentary made about the found footage, and even the typical TV commercial interruptions you'd see while watching a show like Ghost Chasers (Lloyd Kaufman pops up as a late-night barker of some sort of shady wares, there's the diet and exercise ads, as well as a spot-on one for a prescription medication which makes the disease seem preferable to the cure). Another nice touch is the tie-in with Alfred Hitchcock's The Lady Vanishes (and there's even footage from the public domain flick included to add texture).
The mystery is mainly well-manufactured, and the scares are there — even the CGI isn't half-bad, considering what must have been an incredibly low budget (a reported $15,000). There's the expected quivering picture and night vision, which I'm not a fan of, but completely unforgivable is the oddly swinging camera in the beginning before things even get crazy. The makeup effects are suitably sticky and icky, the location is spooky, and the entire set up is well thought out.
Too bad the proverbial paranormal ball is dropped at the climax, making for a watery resolution. But it's a minor quibble all things considered — I have to give kudos to writer-director Steve Gibson for doing a lot with a little.
The Feed is playing in Los Angeles this weekend at the Shriekfest Film Festival.
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Reviewed by Staci Layne Wilson
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