Movie Review: Absentia (2011)


7 years ago, Tricia’s husband went missing.  Now, she’s moved on, is pregnant, and her sister is back in town to help with the baby.  And to help file the paperwork to receive the death certificate.  That’s when Tricia starts seeing him again.

At first she just sees him out of the corner of her eye.  Then, he’s a brief flash in the shadows.  Tricia (Courtney Bell) has vivid lucid dreams of her missing husband angry at her, until she starts seeing him in plain daylight.

In the meantime, her sister, Callie (Katie Parker), is using the time with her sister to recover from her drug addiction. She’s found God, and goes on morning jogs that lead her through a creepy tunnel. In there, she has a strange interaction with a homeless man, which sets off a chain of weird events.

Sounds creepy, right? It totally was. The scene was set, and if I had stopped watching here, I would’ve been seeing Daniel (Morgan Peter Brown) in the shadows for the rest of the night.

Instead, it starts to fall apart. All of the special effects seemed to be used up in the first half. The acting by the sisters was great, the missing persons were creepy, but I never felt any empathy for the secondary characters.

AbsentiaIf you want to enjoy this movie, don’t pay attention. It descends from a horror movie to a mystery crime drama that poses more questions than it answers. Tricia has naturally become involved with the lead detective on her husband’s case (Dave Levine), and the baby is his, but they’ve never gone out on a date. Naturally, Callie regresses back into drug use, but are the things she sees real, or part of the trip? She describes a monster, who I think we’re supposed to believe is real, yet we never get to see it.

Absentia left me feeling unfulfilled. The ending is, well, lame, and doesn’t give you any closure. There was so much potential for further spooks, but instead the time was waisted on interrogating people at the police station. One character, who had very little screen time, probably had an excellent story, but when faced by the cops, refused to talk.

By the end, I was convinced that the monsters and ghosts weren’t real. If I’m not scared or disturbed after a horror movie is over, then I don’t consider it a success.

Rating: 2/5 ★★☆☆☆ 


About Michelle_H

Michelle Hartz, Ph.Z., is the Graphic Designer at Baugh Enterprises, specializing in design for print and promotional products. She is also the Municipal Liaison for National Novel Writing Month (or NaNoWriMo) in Bloomington, Indiana. Michelle has published two of her NaNoWriMo books: Helpless, a horror story set on a wind farm; and Brains for the Zombie Soul, a parody containing nearly 101 heartwarming and inspirational stories celebrating the differently animated.

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