THE MOVIE (2022) Reviews of darkly comedic horror

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‘It’s only compelling if it’s real’
The Movie is a 2022 American dark comedy horror film about a creepy director who persecutes his favourite actress in her own home. Shot entirely on an iPhone.

Written and directed by Michael Mandell (shorts: Spare Some Change; She Didn’t Feel It). The movie stars Bonnie Root and Jarrod Pistilli.


“The straightforward storytelling allows each decision and moment to sink in. It also brings added excitement. Ultimately, writer-director Michael Mandell does not always get the point across. There are some interesting themes tackled – the price of fame and what people will do to attain it are the most obvious – but The Movie can also be too grating.” AIPT

The Movie could have been a story about a woman struggling in the film industry only to be abused and thrown away. It could have been a home invasion movie about a man with mental health issues who gets the help he needs. However, despite the comedic tone at the starts it eventually gets much darker which makes time with Walter even less appealing.” Battle Royale with Cheese


“Mandell does well with his limited budget, keeping the film inside the house and (mostly) holding the tension created in the opening moments. While the effectiveness of the piece is in constant battle with Pistilli’s performance, Root’s steady work, the screenplay, and Mandell’s dedication make the film work.” The Movie Revue

“In the role of Walter, Jarrod Pistill is purely manic as he takes his filmmaking aspirations and fandom to toxic levels […] Pistell is evil in the role, making sense when he reveals his motivation for why he turned out the way he did […] Never overstaying its welcome and keeping a short run time, The Movie is a decent debut from Michael Mandell and carried by his actors.” Reviews and Dunn

The Movie was released online on September 6, 2022.

Technical specs:
1 hour 25 minutes



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