The hunt to see if an urban legend is true brings terror and horror to an amateur film making duo, in this delightful underrated Found Footage entry from 2017.
In an age of horror where Found Footage gets so many weekly releases that its hard to keep track on what to watch and not, with many missing the radar of most horror fanatics.
It was only this week after reading an article from the guys over on the renowned Bloody Disgusting webpage about some of the most overlooked Found Footage Horrors, that Butterfly Kisses came to my attention.
Having seen four of the seven on their list, with two not yet released, this little horror that was released three years ago intrigued me from the off and as soon as it got dark, I closed my blinds, turned off the lights and rented in hope that I would at least be looking in the dark corners of my room, thinking something was watching….waiting…..!!
All FF films like and die by their source material. If you have seen one of the entries where a gang of paranormal experts get terrorised in an old rundown asylum, then you have basically seen them all, but much like The Blair Witch, if they have a hook that can get your horror juices flowing, then the film has already succeeded the chills required and while 99% of them fail to offer this, thankfully there are rarities like Butterfly Kisses that simply blow you away.
The film by Erik Kristopher Myers, takes on the unheard urban legend of The Blink Man, in which the story goes that an old homeless blind man was hit and killed by a train in the early 1900s by the Ilchester Tunnel which is located near the town of Ellicott City, Maryland.
Now he haunts that location and the legend goes that if you stare into the tunnel for one hour starting at 11pm all without blinking, the Blink Man will appear and from then on, every time you blink, he will get closer and closer until eventually his eyelashes brush against your face, hence the expression “butterfly kisses”.
Of course it wouldn’t be a FF horror film if certain people don’t investigate these claims and here its in the shape of budding amateur film-makers Sophia’s (Rachel Armiger) and Feldman’s (Reed DeLisle) whose hunt for the truth of this tale, results in their tapes being discovered by Gavin (Seth Adam Kallick) another film-maker many years later.
Discovering many mysteries to these tapes and what is on them, Gavin decides to do his own investigation in which the film we are watching is basically a documentary with a few talking heads, with the original footage of Sophia and Gavin’s cut in-between.
Its that clever concept seen in many films like Lake Mungo, Hell House LLC and Savageland which once more proves to be an effective way to bring chills to your bones, because trust me there are some creepy moments here that make it a rotten shame that a film like this has been missed by the masses.
While it lacks in the gore, the spooky concept more than delivers in spades, with the two storylines offering up a different enticing hook as with the first story we know where the two young people are going to end up, but where does the story of Gavin go, as we have this feeling of impending doom to where his character is heading.
By saying anymore will only give the game away as the film plays with the concept of Found Footage to a wonderful effect, dipping its toes into the “meta” of horror with even having a certain Eduardo Sanchez – yes the co director of Blair Witch popping up to discredit the footage of The Blink Man.
Its moments like that, which make Butterfly Kisses such a wonderful watch and while it really at times doesn’t offer anything we haven’t seen before in this genre, it somehow manages to touch the essence of such classics like Blair that being a horror fan, it makes me ashamed at the fact that its taken me three years since its release to finally watch this.
Don’t make that same mistake yourself…..