After his personal life falls apart, Evan decides to take a trip to Italy. On his arrival he meets Louise, a mysterious and charismatic young woman who harbors a dark, primordial secret.
Justin Benson and Aaron Moorhead are a pair of filmmakers who have consistently impressed me. Their previous film Resolution was a real genre-bender and I am delighted that nothing has changed with their latest offering Spring. Combining the sweet natured romance of Before Sunrise with the horror and creativity similar to An American Werewolf In London, Spring is a story like nothing you will have seen before.
Sharing the directors seat Moorhead and Benson demonstrate plenty of artistic flare. They clearly take pride in showcasing the beauty of the Italian coastline whilst injecting strong and intense moments of horror. Showing a keen eye for aesthetics and a meticulous focus to detail, the pair clearly have the discipline to captivate an audience without pandering to them. The script is penned by Benson alone. It comes complete with dialogue that flows incredibly well and has such coherence that the characters feel completely authentic. Meanwhile, the story is airtight and without giving too much away, comes with its own original mythology. Benson gives the audience plenty to feast on and handles its influences with respect and poise.
In the film Lou Taylor Pucci stars in the lead role of Evan, a twenty-something man who has literally lost everything. His performance echoes his characters sense of dread and personal pain perfectly. During the course of the film we see his character grow and Pucci’s performance delivers the necessary emotions to hit every strike with precision. Joining Pucci is Nadia Hilker, she plays the role of his love interest Louise. Her performance is magical and provides such warmth and heart to the character that makes it easy to fall in love with her. The role is underpinned by an inherent sadness which is masked in a web of mystery and as complex as the character is, Hilker does a phenomenal job to bring her to life.
The rest of the film is technically sound despite a couple of moments where the special effects turn slightly hammy in places. However these moments are handled superbly by the cast and crew. So when weighed up against the consistency of the rest of the film these moments do not affect the overall impact as Spring remains relatively flawless throughout. Overall, Spring is not strictly a horror film nor is it a drama instead it transcends all genres to deliver a story that feels entirely unique. Benson’s script is intelligently written and his co-direction with Moorhead is superb. Together the duo show plenty of flare which is difficult to resist as a genre fan so Spring is a monster you won’t want to miss.
Words: Jon Dickinson (@marvelguy)