A woman searching for answers gets a lot more than what she bargains for in this exciting horror thriller from writer-director Mickey Keating.
Upon learning of her mother’s death, Marie Aldrich gets a letter in which she searches for answers. She learns that her mom has been buried in a small, isolated town that has shut down for the season with a storm brewing. She brings her boyfriend George along for the ride. Despite the warnings from the guard in charge of the town’s drawbridge, Marie is determined to find out what has happened to her mother.
Once they arrive in the town, they are looked upon by the townsfolk, who don’t seem to be too kind and pose as standoffish towards the duo. Miss Emily, the town’s florist, who also warns Marie and George about their surroundings. When the two end up at the local watering hole, the townsfolk once again come off as being reluctant to welcome them. When Marie and George end up in a car crash, Marie gets help from a local fisherman who tells Marie the horrifying truth about the town. She soon realizes that this is one town she may have wished she never entered.
In his latest offering, Mickey Keating has come up with a very good film inspired by many films, especially John Carpenter’s The Fog and Hideo Nakata’s Dark Water. Keating wanted to bring a Southern Gothic tale and with the amazing visuals and scares, he has succeeded with this tale of an isolated town with a dark secret and the couple who find themselves in the middle of the chaos that soon ensues.
Jocelin Donahue churns an exciting performance as the determined Marie, who searches for answers after she learns her mother has mysteriously died in the small isolated Southern town. Donahue has the makings of a scream queen but still show the strength needed to overcome the secret that plagues the town. The tension between Marie, her boyfriend George, and the townsfolk is one you can cut with a knife. Despite a small sense of good intentions from both Richard Brake’s Bridge Man and April Linscott’s Miss Emily, it’s clear these townsfolk do not want these people around.
The visuals are sure to attract horror fans as the dark blues, blacks, and greys are prominent with the setting of the film. There may be only one jump scare of the film, but the film is all about tension. Soon enough, the third act reveals the secret of the town, and it soon delves into some madness where Marie finds something unexpected as well as a shocking revelation from the Bridge Man himself that just makes the tension amped up to very high levels. The final moments of the film are quite shocking and yet, eases the tension that plagues the rest of the film.
Offseason is a thriller in the vein of The Fog and revolves more about tension with an excellent performance by lead Jocelin Donahue and an amazing debut performance by April Linscott.
WFG RATING: B+
RLJE Films and Shudder present a Kodiak Pictures production in association with Defiant Studios and Sunset Junction Entertainment. Director: Mickey Keating. Producers: Maurice Fadida and Eric B. Fleischman. Writer: Mickey Keating. Cinematography: Mac Fisken. Editing: Valerie Kruifeifer.
Cast: Jocelin Donahue, Joe Swanberg, Richard Brake, Melora Walters, Jeremy Gardner, April Linscott, Jonathan Medina, Larry Fessenden, Eliza Shin, Andrew Varenhorst.
The film will be released in select theaters, On Demand, and Digital on March 11, 2022.