Backtrack (2015) Poster

(I) (2015)

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kosmasp14 December 2015
The movie does play with expectations, but not in a "wink wink" way, we know you know or anything like that. It does feed into fears and it is very atmospheric to say the least. The main actors help elevate this into territory it might not have gone with lesser talent (no pun intended of course).

The story might be simple (if you look back at it), but it's the way they achieved what they set out to do. A thriller/horror/suspense hybrid, that takes you on a ride, without knowing where it will end and how we got there. There are the occasional jump scares and some might feel cheated by them, but it works all in favor of the movie. I'm not going to talk about the story, because you should dive in and find out, what is going on along with the character, peeling away layer after layer ...
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slowly, but surely gets you.
ladcrooks-26-19289326 March 2016
It was slow to start and had me wondering, do i carry on? Maybe i am impatient or was it my mood that day? Then the mystery starts to unfold and you think you know, but you do not ha! The mystery almost holds it self to the very end.

I'm from old school where the Exorcist still remains my top scary film.

Freddy Kruger and Jason ...... Well them films are for kids, cos they have no imagination and have to live with special effects.

This film is about ones conscience even though he is not aware of for some time. A past that got locked out but comes back when his daughter is involved in a car crash

I gave it a 7 because it was good film
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A well paced mystery/horror that keeps you hooked till the end.
Augusts Bautra20 April 2016
Backtrack starts off setting the mood. From the opening credits and first few minutes you know that Peter Bower (played by Adrien Brody) and his wife, Carol (Jenni Baird) are regaining their footing in life after some terrible incident.

Peter works in some psychiatric capacity, seeing patients. The weather is drab, the routine - taking it's toll, home life is yet in shambles. First cracks start to appear as odd occurrences, then things get progressively more inexplicable and Peter comes to shocking realizations, explanations to which must be sought in his past, back at his home town...

It is rather commendable that Backtrack manages to start off disguising itself as a psychology mystery, but slowly progresses into a cool detective.

I was not a fan of the cheap jump-scares, I would have liked Peter's confusion and anxiety communicated differently. I did, however, thoroughly enjoy the ghost story symbolisms of doors that just won't stay shut, pages that just won't burn etc.

Cinematography in Backtrack is very well done - colors and lighting always play well with the tone of scenes, especially the dark and shadowy beginning portraying hopelessness and brightness in the end signifying new vitality.

The classical score is also to be praised - it works well to accent the continually growing suspense of the story.

The unkempt Brody works extremely well as the morally crushed Peter Bower, definitely matured since the 2005s The Jacket, shining in key scenes like "saying her name" and "after confession". Honorable mention to Robin McLeavy's senior constable Barbara Henning, portraying sensible competence and also managing to be the damsel in distress when necessary.

Backtrack is not perfect. "Some characters were not developed enough" is a legitimate complaint. "That scene did not make sense/was unnecessary" is also an understandable criticism. Nevertheless, the movie does not bore, nor does it get tripped up by it's own flaws on the way of delivering a convincing mystery that always hangs by the last thread to make sense of it all.

8/10, would backtrack again.
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This is a movie that has a great idea, an exciting concept, but it never achieves what it could be.
Tony Heck17 March 2016
Warning: Spoilers
"You don't want to remember." Peter Bower (Brody) is a psychologist that has just discovered something that changes his life. All the patients he has been seeing, and his own psychiatrist do not exist. Mix that with the lost memory of a tragic past and Peter puts his sanity on the line trying to make things right. The more he remembers the more terrifying things become. This is a movie that has a great idea, an exciting concept, but it never achieves what it could be. I did like this and this had elements of the Sixth Sense which worked, but there was just something missing to make this as cool as it could have been. I can't say I was disappointed because I hadn't heard about this before I watched it, but I can say the set up and idea were more exciting than the actual movie was. This is still a good movie that is worth seeing, but it really could have been so much more exciting. Overall, I did like it but sadly the idea was better than the execution. I give this a B-.
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Way beyond your expectations
AhmedNammour6 April 2016

Mystery, thriller, drama. The whole package

A simple plot when you look back at it, But the exquisite story telling that keeps you at the edge of your seat for the whole run time is what really makes it a masterpiece.

Also an amazing achievement in giving an atmospheric mood.

The tune is creepy but entertaining at the same time.

Gotta give credit to adrien brody for an outstanding performance. Alongside with the whole stellar cast. Just wow !!

You can't ask for more.

Buckle up and enjoy the journey, it's worth it.
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Well executed but a few problems in the script
Gino Cox26 March 2016
"Backtrack" is well executed. The acting and cinematography are competent and professional. Special effects are more than adequate. It economically manages to convey a sense of desolation, solitude and creepiness.

Horror films generally adhere to a simple basic formula. A sinful act unleashes a supernatural power that wreaks vengeance on the guilty, but spares the innocent and those who repent. Occasionally films like "The Sixth Sense" and "Ghost Town" effectively embellish the basic formula in novel, interesting and dramatically gratifying ways.

"Backtrack" deviates from the basic horror conventions, but does not provide anything superior and is inconsistent. Arguably innocent people are caused to suffer. The supernatural forces torment the protagonist who is not the sole or even the most guilty party. They seem to want his help or he wants their help, but they seem equally capable of interacting with the most guilty party without him. It's not clear whether they need the protagonist's help or they want to involve him in order to help him expiate his guilt. The supernatural forces do not have a consistent understanding of their status.

The supernatural forces do not behave randomly, but even though they operate in concert, it's not clear that they understand their purpose or the master plan. Their motives for particular actions aren't always clear. They don't always seem to be on the same page.

Some of the early scenes are ambiguous. It's not clear whether the protagonist is alive, dead, dreaming, deluded, hallucinating or what. We have dreary, foreboding scenes of abandoned buildings and streets and empty trains. Everybody who visits the protagonist seems unusual. He never interacts with anybody who seems entirely normal. Then suddenly, his world is populated, but the reason for the transition is unclear.

The movie would have been stronger with a clearer concept of who and what the supernatural elements were, why they did what they did and what they know or believe about the events in question. If they need the protagonist's assistance to discover who was the guiltiest, that could have been clearer. If they have several suspects, why torment only the protagonist? One of the supernatural entities knows the whole story. Why they don't go after the guiltiest party directly is unclear, except that a negligent act gave him some special insights, but that resulted in the death of an innocent, so the story is less satisfying.
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Nice little movie with elements of horror/mystery/thriller...all combined into one
bcheng931 February 2016
OK...before i start on the review itself, i just want to say that i am giving this movie a 7/10 rating. So far this movie has a rating of 5.9 which is a little low in my opinion. The movie itself was very professionally done and the Cgi in the movie...about a minute in all was fairly well done. I went in to the movie hoping Adrien Brody just didn't needed a paycheck...and was very happy he didn't. Don't want to give the spoiler for the movie...just like the other reviewers said. Please give this movie a chance if you are a fan of either horror, mystery or thriller movies. I think you'll be fairly pleased with the movie overall, as there are elements of all three genres in this movie. Hahaha...still thinking about this movie and just wanted to say that its classified under horror. I am a big fan of a good horror movie also..especially...a good jump scare...hehehe. THis movie although you're watching it you will be thinking..OK..i know where this is going...the try for a jump scare is coming right now. This actually keeps happening for a while until you forget about it...because what you think might be a jump scare which you brace for never materializes....UNTIL...BOOMMM!!!. Hahaha...I swear i almost jumped out of my skin. For the reviewer who said it was a good movie with a god-awful would one close the movie???? There was only 2 ways out of the ending...and...the latter would have been to gloomy indeed, and would have made viewers very uneasy indeed. All in all a very worthwhile watch in my opinion for any fans of a good movie...and how long has it been since Brody made a movie?
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Adrien Brody nails it again.....a must see....
wildsparrow1628 February 2016
When Adrien Brody stars, you know it will be good - you just are not sure HOW good. This movie is REALLY good and a better actor could not have been chosen to play this tortured soul struggling to hold onto his grasp on reality. To not lose his mind, he knows he must delve into his past where 'some memories are so unacceptable, we do whatever we can to keep them buried'- it has every element you want in a thriller. It is utterly haunting, moody, unpredictable, creepy, and emotional. Did I leave anything out? It is a cerebral thriller - not quick-paced - just enough to keep building suspense. And make no mistake - just when you think you have it figured out - you will be wrong.
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Great Movie With a God Awful Ending
This was an interesting movie to say the least. I saw this movie at the Tribeca Film Festival so I had no idea what I was going to see. This movie sets up the interesting premise of a psychiatrist, grieving the loss of his daughter, seeing ghosts who are trying to show him something he blocked out of his mind. Adrien Brody plays said psychiatrists and, as expected, gives a great performance but I do feel this movie was way too laid back for his standard and he basically felt, well, complacent. Though some parts of the plot may seem familiar it was a brilliantly written story until the last 20 minutes in which the writers pulled as much as they could out of their asses before this potential filled movie ended. All and all I would give this movie a 70 or a B+. Its a great movie in every aspect except its ending.
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WOW This one's a must see.
save_ferrisb16 November 2015
Warning: Spoilers
I was fortunate enough to catch Backtrack in Toronto at After Dark. I was so glad I did because its actually one of the most exciting films of its kind that I have seen in the last few years.

Adrien Brody's psychologist Peter Bower has his world shattered when he realizes that his patients are not actually alive and are in fact ghosts. These ghosts cause Peter to uncover a terrifying secret from his past, all the while he must deal with the loss of his daughter.

I enjoyed going into this film blind, maybe check out the trailer but avoid spoilers at all costs! Backtrack works best when its mystery slowly unwinds on screen and you find yourself alongside this psychologist as he attempts to uncover the truth. The film comes to a really satisfying conclusion to all its madness too, I haven't been able to get it out of my mind for the last month or so.

The performances are absolutely great and really sell the mystery. Adrien Brody is haunting on screen, Sam Neill is a welcome presence and fans of Mad Max will enjoy seeing Bruce Spence show up too. Big winding mysteries usually live and die based on how good their casts are at selling it and these guys do an amazing job.

I can't wait to see this one again when its in regular release. Give it a go! With such an intriguing storyline you really can't go wrong.
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