Never Hike Alone
Film: Never Hike Alone
Director: Vincente DiSanti
Writer: Vincente DiSanti
Starring: Drew Leighty, Vincente DiSanti and Katie Schwartz
This was another film that I heard about on podcasts I listen to. I finally decided to check it out during my 2017 film round-up. I do have to say that this is the Friday the 13th we’ve been wanting. Some of the talk for the one that was supposed to be released in October of 2017 was that it could be found footage. Before I get into this too much more, the official synopsis is a hiker’s survival skills are put to the test, when he stumbles upon the remains of an old abandoned camp and discovers its long dark secret.
This film blends found-footage with normal filming style and I think it works really well. I like the idea of a guy stumbling upon Camp Crystal Lake and getting stalked by Jason Voorhees (Vincente DiSanti). It is very interesting to see our main character, Kyle McLeod (Drew Leighty) trying to use his survival skills to avoid death and make it through the night.
Something else about this film I really liked were the references this other films in the series. Like Cunningham Road, which is Sean S. Cunningham one of the creators of the franchise, or having Tommy Jarvis (Thom Mathews) return. I’m bummed this film was less than an hour long, because I would love to see what these guys could do by getting to make the next film in the actual series.
The acting was decent. I’m not going to harp too much on it, because this film was fan made, so it had a small budget that was from Kickstarter. Leighty I believed could be a guy really into hiking who has his web series. DiSanti did really well as Jason. He brings that imposing nature that is important. I thought everyone did well enough for a film like this. I would consider checking out other films they’ve done to see how they’ve faired. I definitely would like to see them in things in the future as well.
The effects in this film were done practical and I think they look pretty real. The blood has a good color and consistency. The scene where Leighty’s leg is messed up and he has to clean it out looked great actually, it literally made me cringe. There’s not a lot of death scenes, but the ones that we get are solid.
This film’s editing was very good as well. I go back that I wish it was longer, because I wanted to see more. The running time was fine though for the story that is built. It builds tension until the climax and then gives us the payoff it needed. It never overstays its welcome.
The score of the film didn’t really stand out to me, but it doesn’t hurt the film either. I do have to say that I wasn’t a huge fan of the sound effects added to make it seem like Jason is much heavier footed. I get why they are doing it and it comes into play at the end, but it seemed artificial to me.
Now with that said, I would recommend seeing this film, especially if you are a fan of the Friday the 13th series. This is the film that we’ve wanted and waited for; it is just a shame that it is a fan-made film instead of an actual addition to the series. The story and concept was good, even incorporating found-footage into it. The acting comes off very amateur, but I’m not bothered by it in the slightest. The effects were really good. The editing was as well. The score doesn’t hurt or help the film in my opinion. I do just wish this film was longer and had more kills in it. With that said though, I think this is a good film and recommend giving it a viewing.
My Rating: 8 out of 10