I finished off my time at Edinburgh International Film Festival with Coherence. A creepy science fiction chiller that begins at a friendly dinner party and turns into something much more unnerving, Coherence was a great way to finish what has been a remarkable festival. The film uses shaky cameras and hand-held equipment to create a similar appearance to the likes of Cloverfield and The Blair Witch Project but it somehow manages to dance between the cliché appearance of home video and the professionalism of your typical horror film style. When Em drives up to her friend’s house her mobile phone screen shatters unexpectedly. Once at the dinner party, and in the company of good friends, we discover that such events have been mentioned on the evening’s news. As the dinner commences so does the travel of a comet over the earth, something the group converse about and debate its relationship to their lack of phone signal. This kind of set up is usually the irritating necessity in this genre and characters typically become irritating. Coherence manages to avoid the tediousness we expect from such an opening. Its amusing script and diversity of characters and personalities makes for enjoyable viewing before we settle in for the terror that’s about to ensue.
When the house loses power and the guests are left in confusion and panic, an unnerving atmosphere sets in. Beginning as a horror film before excelling as a science fiction thrill ride, Coherence keeps its audience guessing and only improves in depth and enjoyment as it progresses. The performances are typical of the genre but the script continues to stop us from disliking the individuals we are watching. With unexpected twists and constant complications, Coherence manages to remain suspenseful and engaging throughout. Aesthetically, Coherence, looks like one of many films you’ve seen before but with its detailed plot and raging pace it is apparent that this is something completely original. Mixing a recognisable style with a refreshing plot makes Coherence a nice surprise. This is a psychological drama in which nobody can be trusted, least of all yourself. From the first power cut to the dramatic and ferocious climax, Coherence grips you and spins you in circles only to leave you dizzy, disorientated but thoroughly entertained. Coherence is nearly impossible to pin down and label. It is many things but first and foremost it is unique and that’s what really counts.
Thanks for reading and let’s all keep supporting our beloved film industry.
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