You know those movies that people always tell you to watch but they won't tell you why? The ones that apparently hold some grain of wisdom so large and powerful that knowing anything about it beforehand might significantly ruin your chances of actually taking something away from it? Absentia is one of those movies which makes me severely question the necessity of writing about it.
I finished watching Absentia this morning after turning it off the night before in the fear of being woken up in the middle of the night by strange bug noises. Don't look at me like that I had the house to myself! Upon completion, my mind was suddenly filled with the kind of panic that only a horror movie blogger could have---what the hell am I going to write about?
Hence this incredibly pointless blog post where I try to convince you to see Absentia without actually telling you anything about it. Although I'm fairly certain that I've said too much already.
So here's the deal. If you enjoy watching movies that aren't straightforward in their apparent horror gene and if you like feeling really unsettled for no reason then you should definitely watch Absentia. It's a horror movie unlike any that I've seen. It made me feel so unbelievably tense, confused, scared and hopeless. It made me question the very idea of horror movies in the first place and most importantly it made me realize yet again that Doug Jones is probably some kind of alien from planet creepy face and body.
It's not even like there is this crazy overdose of jump scares or shock either. The tension that you feel amounts from extremely simple concepts that do just enough to send tiny shivers down your spine. The movie also utilizes the idea that a structure or piece of scenery can be one of the scariest characters out of the whole story. And most importantly it plays with the idea of loss, devastation and puppies in trash bags.....wait I mean....of drawing your own conclusions.
There are no answers in Absentia. For many this will be the hardest thing to swallow and perhaps for some people this will be the biggest fault of the film. Those people suck. No they do, they really do. Because if Absentia teaches us anything, it's that there will never be an end to what we imagine. What does it all mean? It means whatever you want it to mean. No seriously, what does it mean? SHUT UP. Just watch it. You'll thank me later.