Writer-director Dan Bowhers sets up his sci-fi thriller Blue Hour: The Disappearance Of Nick Brandreth as a documentary. Documentarian Olivia’s (Morgan DeTogne) latest project is very near and dear to her heart as she turns the camera on her mother and herself. Olivia hopes to get to the truth of her father’s disappearance 25 years ago. At the time, she was 9 years old, and the police investigation ruled Nick Brandreth’s (Nick Brandreth) missing person case a suicide despite no body ever being found.
Olivia, along with Chris (Michael Kowalski) and Luke (Mike Headford), interviews the lead detective in the case as well as her mother. The filmmakers make a breakthrough when they talk to P.I. Hank Arbaghast (James Klobier) and discover old photographs taken by Nick. But as Olivia gets closer to the truth, the cops and everyone else seem to be getting more tight-lipped.
“…as Olivia gets closer to the truth, the cops and everyone else seem to be getting more tight-lipped.”
Blue Hour: The Disappearance Of Nick Brandreth isn’t really found footage. It’s more in the vein of Where’s Marlowe: a film that is as much a documentary as it is about the making of it. The screenplay ably balances the family drama and search for closure with the more out-there ideas at play. While parts do feel scripted, which does hamper the “reality” of the presentation, by and large, there’s a real immediacy to what Olivia and her crew find. The ending is utterly nuts but retains its believability, even if it’s a little too pat in one area.
DeTogne encapsulates the stern, no-nonsense documentarian; think Heather from The Blair Witch Project with more skin in the game. She’s tough but likable. Brandreth plays his namesake (himself?) well in the few times he’s seen. Klobier is tons of fun as the oddly spoken, seemingly delusional private investigator. His cadence is flat, which makes it both respectful and slightly strange. By the finale, it will make sense.
Blue Hour: The Disappearance Of Nick Brandreth is engaging, even if parts of it don’t have that documentary feel as intended. Still, the cast is strong and fits their roles well. The originality of the story is impressive as well.
For more information, visit the official Blue Hour: The Disappearance Of Nick Brandreth site.
"…the cast is strong and fits their roles..."