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  • Writer's picturePigeon Montes

The Vast Of Night: A Retro - Science Fiction Tale On Mysterious Sounds.

Playing like an episode of The Twilight Zone, The Vast of Night is a transcendent science-fiction feature that goes through nontraditional paths. Similar to films like My Dinner With Andre and The End of The Tour, it still levies natural dialogue and sequences that create a world bigger than life itself. Though topics don’t weave in many directions as consistently as the aforementioned films, it’s devotion to the character that makes take this mysterious journey of near disbelief.

A simple way to describe this film is if Close Encounters of A Third Kind was a senior thesis for a Michigan State student and they chose a less family oriented route. But it's a testament to director Andrew Patterson’s eloquence in taking different influential styles and making something his own. There are hints of the intensity driven escalation of a Christopher Nolan film and the nuanced mystery of a Richard Kelly film. It’s use of linear camera movements, including a long and beautiful tracking shot from the radio to the school. But the adventure is full of intense solving and disarray. It's lush cinematography is how it keeps afloat from being another film with a specific niche.

The Vast of Night is different than the niche. It takes aspects of our checkered past with UFO and Area 51 conspiracy theories and ashes from the infamous reading of War of The Worlds by Orson Welles. It is built upon the mystery created by the sounds we hear, as this is a predominantly dark and muddy colored film. It makes use of our ears to follow the mystery as they do with the strange frequencies Fay and Everett hears. It plays to the strengths of the delivery from the sound editors and mixers for the film. The preciseness needed to overlay the usage of an old frequency radio, a magnetic strip sound recorder, and an old operator machine.

The sound is hypnotizing because it is a simple distortion that can be from stations trying to use the same frequency and overlapping. But It never downplays the threat and the fear of that unknown to our leads. They never expect the most logical answer and instead search for the roots, which began with a caller to Everett's show.

It is through twists and turns the sound may eerily sustain itself, but sometimes with the performances you can’t tell who is or isn’t crazy. Everett and Fay learn more about what they hear and what was seen, but the disfunction of the mind is what will guide you through this story.

The everlasting effect of the interviews at hand for the main characters match the stories we’ve heard of the reactions to Orson Welles’ reading of War of The Worlds, by E.G. Wells. There was hysteria because radio was the predominant source of media for people in the United States and without proper visuals the belief was deep rooted. The reactions and scares are adrenaline inducing. It takes notes from infamous cover-ups and conspiracy theories (like Roswell) from our history to build those scare tactics that make us needing a pace maker. But it is no Uncut Gems where it takes you to the cardiologist.

Though the escalation of the events plays to the ambiguity of our bewildered mind. Though due to recent news there is more concrete evidence we aren’t alone in the universe. And for some, the ending may come with obvious cues prior too, but it leaves us with many questions. Some of which may not come to you straight away. The Vast of Night is one of the rare gems that makes use of its budget to create something profound.

The Vast Of Night is now available on Amazon Prime and VOD.

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