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The Alter

average rating is 4 out of 5


Jason Knight


Posted on:

Mar 26, 2022

Film Reviews
The Alter
Directed by:
Clem Garritty
Written by:
Clem Garritty, Sadie Spencer, Ollie Jones, Peter Hobday
Graham Butler, Nicki Hobday, Kaffe Keating, Shvorne Marks

Extraordinary things are taking place at an isolated property, where a group of people are staying.


Four friends, Danny, Kate, Rick and Adele are spending the weekend at a large house in the countryside, having a drink, chatting, playing games and generally having a good time. Then they discover a mysterious map that seems to show the location of a hidden treasure and two of them decide to go out during the night and search for it. What will they end up finding?


This short is a spooky and suspenseful story that follows a familiar idea: a group of friends go to an isolated location, where sinister occurrences follow shortly after. It was created as part of The Lowry's Live Now digital commissioning programme and it is an interactive film, enabling the viewers to create their own experience. Basically the story is split into two ten-minute-long films, one takes place during night-time, when the map is found and the search for the treasure begins and the other happens during the morning after. The two films have been put together as one ten-minute-long viewing and the viewer has the ability to switch from one to the other whenever they wish and when they do so, the film switchs to the same shot of the same location, obviously the differences being that the shot will either be night or day and with different events taking place. This clever system results in many or even unlimited viewing experiences of the viewer's choice.


Moving to the quality of the film, the cinematography by Josh Williams looks great and there are some impressive lighting effects. The creative camerawork includes well executed 360-degree camera shots and camera phone point-of-view shots.


The music by Joe Donaldson is a significant contribution and helps create the right atmosphere. It is suspenseful and terrifying and includes frequent sounds of violin.


The audience will most likely have a good time developing their own story, as they interact with this viewing experience. Or they could choose to just watch it, which is just as good, as the story is intriguing and the acting is strong. Either way, this film is well worth pursuing, however it is more rewarding is one decides to have fun and interface.

About the Film Critic
Jason Knight
Jason Knight
Short Film
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