Directed by Blair Erickson
Distributed by XLrator Media
The ad campaign for Banshee Chapter is intriguing but misleading – with art looking more like an ad for “Bodies: The Exhibition” and screaming in text above the title that it’s brought to us by “Zachary Quinto and the producers of Margin Call and All Is Lost.” The movie is actually nothing more than yet another shaky-cam, low-budget flick that’s even more forgettable than most.
It starts off promisingly enough with clips from real-life scientists, politicians and pundits talking about a dangerous, mind-altering chemical once tested on civilians by the CIA in the early 1960s: the MK-Ultra experiments. Who isn’t fascinated by shocking true tales of government cover-ups and human guinea pigs?
So far, so good.
Cut to self-filmed footage of modern-day mad scientist James Hirsch (McMillian) doing research on himself with a swig of mysterious blue liquid that’s guaranteed to blow his mind. Down the hatch, and down the rabbit hole he goes… never to be seen again.
Luckily, James’ BFF is an investigative journalist. Not so lucky for us, she’s a clueless brunet who likes to wander around in the dark a lot brandishing a flashlight and listening to unexplained radio transmissions. Anne (Winter, “Sleepy Hollow”) eventually enlists the help of celebrity counterculture conspiracy nut Thomas Blackburn (Levine, “Monk”), and off the two go in search of her friend, his foes, and answers.
For good measure a ho-hum, convoluted collage of black ops, chemical experimentation and disfigured entities are thrown into the mix. Maybe you need to be on these drugs to follow the needlessly confusing plotting, or maybe it helps to have seen the movie as it was shot in stereoscopic 3D – but whatever the case, I just wasn’t feeling it on Banshee Chapter.
There is a “making-of” featurette with the standard “this is the most awesome, unique, cool and different movie you have ever seen!” type stuff from the producers, director and actors.
1 1/2 out of 5
1 out of 5