Chasing Dreams in Hollywood’s Dark Corners: a Gripping Thriller With a Touch of Horror
Genre: Horror, Thriller
Year Released: 2019
Runtime: 1h 35m
Director(s): Graham Denman
Writer(s): Patrick R. Young, Graham Denman
Cast: Caroline Williams, Chase Williamson, Chris Browning, Danielle Bisutti, Nicole Alexandra Shipley, Shane Coffey, Victor Turpin
Where To Watch: Streaming now, visit www.thehorrorcollective.com for more information
RAVING REVIEW: GREENLIGHT, emerges as a gem in the thriller genre (with just a few wisps of horror to make an impact.) The film combines film lovers' storytelling with dark humor, showcasing a solid cast's talent that gives consistent performances. This is one of those rare instances where the closer you are to filmmaking, the more you’ll appreciate some of the subtle winks and nods in the film, but anyone should still enjoy the thriller aspect.
The plot revolves around Jack Archer, a devoted filmmaker in Los Angeles, portrayed by Chase Williamson. Despite numerous hurdles throughout the film, Jack's determination to achieve his Hollywood dreams never waver. Fate brings him to Bob Moseby, a significant micro-budget horror film scene played by Chris Browning. As Moseby mentors Jack and helps him sharpen his skills, Jack finds himself in an unusual predicament.
At its core, GREENLIGHT delves into the sacrifices required to accomplish one's goals. Williamson's depiction of Jack Archer is spot on as he explores the character's internal struggles. The film's supporting cast shows a solid balance that allows each personality to shine.
While I would have liked to have seen more character development, GREENLIGHT remains an engaging and tension-filled film. The meta-narrative and "film within a film" concept will delight movie enthusiasts while keeping the broader audience on the edge of their seats. They could have easily put all their eggs in one basket but kept enough balance that there was no favoritism.
Graham Denman's feature film directorial debut is a solid entry into the indie horror genre. The film invites viewers to ponder the actual cost of chasing dreams as it explores the darker side of the movie industry. There are a few hiccups, but nothing drags the film down. Most importantly, they followed my rule of “working within their means,” meaning they didn’t push for things they couldn’t do.
The film's cinematography was another standout feature, mixing neon and dark lighting, creating an eerie atmosphere. GREENLIGHT's finale leaves the audience questioning the price of success and ultimately asking themselves how far they’d go to accomplish their dreams.
GREENLIGHT is an innovative indie horror production that offers a fresh viewpoint on the sacrifices and trade-offs demanded in pursuing one's dreams.
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[photo courtesy of ENTERTAINMENT SQUAD]