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Movie: Absentia (2011)

There are fates worse than death.

Absentia (2011) is an independent low-budget horror movie directed by Mike Flanagan.

Synopsis adapted from IMDb: Tricia's (Courtney Bell) husband Daniel (Morgan Peter Brown) has been missing for seven years. Her younger sister Callie (Katie Parker) comes to live with her as the pressure mounts to finally declare him 'dead in absentia.' As Tricia sifts through the wreckage and tries to move on with her life, Callie finds herself drawn to an ominous tunnel near the house. As she begins to link it to other mysterious disappearances, it becomes clear that Daniel's presumed death might be anything but 'natural.' The ancient force at work in the tunnel might have set its sights on Callie and Tricia... and Daniel might be suffering a fate far worse than death in its grasp.

An effective horror movie is one that makes you squirm in your seat and creeps you out with a disturbingly slow-paced storyline. This is what Absentia offers to the audience. There are many scenes in this movie whereby you have to hold your breath because you can't guess what will happen next. There are almost no "I-know-what's-coming-up-next" thoughts running through your mind throughout the entire movie. Its storyline is unfolded mysteriously, leaving much room for us to imagine what on earth happened to the characters.

In short, being an ingenious horror movie without Hollywood's usual bombastic "wow" effects, Absentia is definitely one those rare independent productions that will "wow" you with brilliant simplicity and creativity instead of costly special effects.

Do catch this movie on DVD if you can. I doubt it will be brought into Malaysian cinemas anytime soon.

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