Let's talk about Mr. Jones (2013) today--the latest horror film I've watched!
You know, I really have to give it to myself, I have a knack for accidentally picking out found footage films. Or in this case, movies that are mostly found footage...
Since one of the main characters, Scott, is focused on making a nature documentary (well, mainly focused), we have the pleasure of seeing what's behind his camera for a good bit of the film. That's where the found footage pops in. Even Penny, the other main character and wife of Scott, grabs the camera every now and then. But for the rest of the film, it's a professional camera that is scanning the scene--and truth be told, I liked it better that way.
So basically, as far as the plot goes, this guy Scott and this wife Penny go to this secluded CABIN IN THE WOODS (ahem) so he can be inspired to film a nature documentary. They have a few tiffs, mainly because he comes off his medications right before their "vacation." However, it's almost as if every dramatic fight between them is suddenly forgotten when they come across these...totem-scarecrow-figure-things... Why? Because Penny knows right away they are the creations of a hermit artist by the name of Mr. Jones (oooh). So what's next for the nature documentary? Well nix it of course and make a documentary on the reclusive Mr. Jones instead. (Thanks Penny, gah!)
|totem things in Mr. Jones' basement|
This Mr. Jones character has a pretty creepy atmosphere about him. And his look... He's pretty creepy altogether. While Penny keeps reassuring her husband Scott that Mr. Jones is actually protecting them from something out there, Scott is dead set on the idea that Mr. Jones is the scary and bizarre figure that others Scott talked to have painted him to be. For example, Mr. Jones apparently sends some of his weird skeletal scarecrow artworks to random people. One recipient said it completely changed his existence. And evidently not for the better. So pretty sure Scott is not going to just hop on the "Mr. Jones is a good guy, duh" bandwagon.
I didn't really have any relationship with these two characters, though, and that was a problem. I really hate when that happens. Give me something to go on so I care about them. That's essential, in my opinion. Even in a horror movie!
Also, the number of times the two main characters kept breaking and entering into Mr. Jones' house..wow, just let me tell you something Mr. Jones--you need a No Trespassing sign. Or a German Shepherd. Cujo, maybe. Just some type of security system besides your scarecrow things.
|"Let's just break in and steal everything demonic looking"|
The ending of this movie was mainly what I had a problem with, and from what I researched, what others had a great deal of a problem with as well.
The beginning of the film is shot almost whimsically and I thought about how much I liked artsy horror movies if they're done well. The director, Karl Mueller, even said he was influenced by David Lynch. But I don't know how David Lynch would have taken that because of how the film shifted near the end.
I understand to a degree what was supposed to be going on. To a degree. I don't mind ambiguous endings, but with this ending, there were so many scenarios to deal with that it was just frustrating and almost cheesy.
However, Mr. Jones really wasn't that bad. I feel like I'm putting it down but it was pretty creepy overall. Not many jump scares, but those aren't really my thing anyway. There were scenes that made me uncomfortable and that were pretty suspenseful. I did get particularly uneasy watching the interviews that were filmed by Scott. For some reason you would think that would be the boring part of the film, but the way it was shown was interesting enough that it wasn't just someone sitting down and talking for long periods at a time.
HOWEVER, it was a pretty long movie. Too long of a movie. The parts I liked seemed too edited and the parts I disliked seemed liked they needed to be edited. Also--and this is important--near the end, there is something extremely cheesy that happens (at least for me) that had me dying laughing. I understood basically the point of it but I didn't think parts of it were really necessary. It was in excess and it was hilarious.
*Also, lots of flashing lights near the end--just a warning!
Would I recommend it?
Probably not. Sorry guys. But maybe check out David Lynch's work!