Catfish trailer intrigues
There's a lot of talk about Catfish, a documentary which many people are talking about, but not actually saying much. It seems that there's a twist in the tale of the film that people are trying to keep quiet, and it has quite an effect on the audience, lasting well after the film has ended.
A trailer and website for the film have arrived, and coupled with the blurb there are a number of ways the film could play out. Yet in this day and age it's difficult to believe that this is really a wholly true story.
Catfish tells the story of a 24 year old called Nev, a New York photographer who is contacted by an eight year old girl on MySpace seeking permission to paint one of his photographs. He agrees, and when he sees the result he is amazed. Through the course of their online discussions he gets to know her and her family, and then starts to fall for her older sister Megan, a musician and model.
It's around this time that his friends Ariel Schulman and Henry Joost, who are also film-makers, decide to start following Nev's story and filming what happens, for they sense something is happening, and they aren't wrong when the revelations begin.
Fake true stories have been around for some time, but since The Blair Witch Project and the lesser known The Last Broadcast the idea has definitely been on the rise, and as Paranormal Activity (Filmstalker review) recently showed, they aren't going anywhere fast.
However since we've had so much exposure to the idea of the fake documentary and the overuse of the terms "based on true events" or "inspired by..." it's hard to believe a film that is getting such commentary about the surprises and shocks of the revelations is all true, for the chances of capturing something this powerful in a documentary that didn't start out with that intention is surprising in itself. It's then no wonder that scepticism rears its head almost instantly.
I almost hate to watch the trailer and read details of films that promise such surprises from the comments of critics and within the film blurb.
The problem with modern day audiences and marketing is that you can't help but try and guess what the twists and turns of a film would be, even if you avoid the marketing, watching the film it's hard not to let the mind start contemplating.
However it's not so bad here and the trailer does a good job of raising expectations and not giving away too much.
While the trailer sets up where the revelation could be and your mind does the rest of the work, reading the blurb for the film suggests that this isn't the end of the journey, far from it in fact.
"Nev, a 24-year-old New York-based photographer, has no idea what he's in for when Abby, an eight-year-old girl from rural Michigan, contacts him on MySpace, seeking permission to paint one of his photographs. When he receives her remarkable painting, Nev begins a friendship and correspondence with Abby's family. But things really get interesting when he develops a cyber-romance with Abby's attractive older sister, Megan, a musician and model. Prompted by some startling revelations about Megan, Nev and his buddies embark on a road trip in search of the truth"
I'm intrigued, but at the same time my mind just leapt forward, conditioned by the twists and turns of based on and inspired by films that have come before, and already I'm thinking of a couple of possible outcomes.
Of course it could all turn out to be a fake documentary much in the same style as Blair Witch, but with a lot less supernatural theme.