We’re halfway through 31 Days of Horror and I’m tired. You wouldn’t really think it but watching a horror movie and then writing a review about it every day is tiring and sometimes it cuts into your sleep and/or work. Currently, I’m taking a break from my job to watch this current film. As such, I’m writing this review on my laptop in my office while watching this movie on my phone using the Shudder app. You think watching a horror movie alone is creepy, try watching a horror movie alone in your office at night. Yikes.
Anyway, for today, I’ve picked The Collingswood Story starring Stephanie Dees as Rebecca and Johnny Burton as Johnny. The plot follows Rebecca and Johnny as they attempt to maintain their long-distance relationship via video chatting. Their lives take a turn when they encounter an online psychic.
So, the first thing that I find cringy is the technology. This is a film that strictly uses webcams from 2002. They call the program video phone and you’ll either see a full-size screen or the actors through the actual video phone border. It’s odd to see the old school tech. Rebecca even uses the phone cord to hook in her laptop because they don’t have wifi.
So, I originally thought it was pretty hokey, the whole video phone thing. Johnny would talk to his beer guzzling friend and Rebecca talked to a bare-chested nut job. Both of those extra characters seemed to be exaggerated versions of what they would actually be like in today’s standards. Then Rebecca meets the psychic online. I’m not sure why, but when the psychic started talking, I became a bit anxious. All the music is non-diegetic (sounds that aren’t natural to the actual story), so when the psychic enters the scene, there’s a low-level thrumming sound that plays and it just threw me off a bit. That same sound comes back every so often.
I think the most unbelievable aspect of this film is the camera quality. It’s 2002, but the camera quality is really clear. Especially when Rebecca is sending a video email and taking video of her driving around Collingswood.
It’s interesting that this film entered the scene in 2002, but never really made it big. This was the time when found footage films and other films like it were popular. The Blair Witch Project came out in 1999 and Paranormal Activity released in 2007. So, it fits perfectly within that era of films.
According to the Did You Know section of IMDb, the entire film was shot using a Sony Hi-8 camcorder.
The ending is confusing. In my opinion, it ends too abruptly and doesn’t mean anything to the story. Overall, I liked watching it to look back on the old technology. It was creepier than some of the newer films I’ve seen. However, the ending just wrecks the film.
31 Days of Horror Rankings:
- Deadstream (2022)
- Willy’s Wonderland (2021)
- Grimcutty (2022)
- Watcher (2022)
- She Will (2022)
- Escape Room (2019)
- We Have Always Lived in the Castle (2018)
- The Cellar (2022)
- The Last Rite (2021)
- Revealer (2022)
- Sissy (2022)
- Halloween Ends (2022)
- Mr. Harrigan’s Phone (2022)
- Butcher, Baker, Nightmare Maker (1982)
- The Collingswood Story (2002)
- Werewolf by Night (2022)