Camera Obscura is about a veteran war photographer with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder who sees imminent deaths in his developed photos, questioning his already fragile sanity and putting the lives of those he loves in danger.
Jack (Christopher Denham) is a war photographer with a dark burden, which he is trying to deal with through the help of his psychiatrist. His fiancee, Claire, (Nadja Bobyyleva) buys an antique camera in an auction and gives it to him as an anniversary gift. To his surprise, all the developed pictures are in Black and White form. The pictures also show gruesome deaths which are later to come true.
The idea of the whole movie is just fantastic! No doubt about that. I literally enjoyed the entire 1 hour 35 minutes duration movie, with its tight, edge of the seat screenplay. However, the climax of the movie might leave a sour taste in some mouths. I needed an explanation for what exactly happened with Claire! Did Detective Dawson and his partner find out the real truth? If they did, what was it?
Christopher Denham did a wonderful job, living the character of a man who is buried in his own complexities. There are few moments in the film where Christopher went a little overboard, but that was alright! In the end, he was terrifically, very effective, and I am sure he will receive more acclaim. Nadja Bobleva is another tremendous performer to look forward too. But my favorite was Detective Dawson (Catherine Curtin). She had very little to do, but whenever she appeared, she made her presence felt with her personality and aura of a tough woman to crack.
First time director Aaron B. Koontz, who also co-wrote the screenplay, makes a scary thriller. I repeat, scary THRILLER (not horror), which has everything to keep you glued to your screen! The camera work by Chris Heinrich is really eye catching and moves exactly with the film's momentum. There were absolutely no un-required shots or extra close ups. The editing of the film also does full justice to the screenplay. The music and the sound effect of the film only add to the mysterious atmosphere.
To conclude, I recommend this fantastic effort by Koontz to the audiences who are satisfied with a scary-as-hell ride with and a no-questions-asked kind of a film. Camera Obscura will surely satisfy you as a tight rolling thriller; but, as I mentioned earlier, this one will also leave you with many questions in mind-- like it did to me!
Camera Obscura won't disappoint you. But, its' climax will!
If you're interested, Camera Obscura will hit theaters June 9th and will be available on VOD and Digital HD June 13th. The soundtrack, composed by Steve Moore, is set for release on the 9th as well, and it is available for pre-order today.
Vaalee Supreet Nair