Coming from director John Hyams and Magnet Releasing is a film of not being able to get away from evil and never really left ALONE.
Jessica (Jules Willcox) is a young woman who wants to start her life over again when her marriage comes to an abrupt end. Packing everything she can fit into her car and a tow, she takes to the road. Driving through some of the most beautiful scenery, going up a mountain she encounters a car that is going excessively slow.
Trying to get around the black SUV brings a close call that has Jessica’s heart racing. Pulling into a motel for the night she wakes up ready to get even farther away from her previous life. A knock at her window makes her jump as a man (Marc Menchaca) apologizes for the previous days event. He tries to engage Jessica in conversation, but she excuses herself quickly.
Back on the road, she finds herself on a golden leaf laden, tree lined two lane road. Her nerves are on edge and seeing the black SUV coming up behind her gets 911 on the line. Its one thing after another when the Man in the black SUV does catch up to her.
Waking up in a cellar, the Man makes it clear he is not someone to be trifled with. Jessica makes her move and ends up out in the middle of the forest fighting for her life. When she comes across Robert (Anthony Heald), she gives herself hope to be free.
The Man is not quite done yet!
Willcox as Jessica starts out an emotional wreck and knows she must start over somewhere. It is a bold move to take to the road alone but then again, she does not exactly plan to deal with the Man in the black SUV. What I enjoy about her character is that she would rather take dangerous risks than give the Man any satisfaction whatsoever. There is a scene in the woods during the rain that I was one tense second after another – I love when that happens.
Menchaca as the Man is eerie and deliberate, and I love that too! Watching him play Russ Langmore in one of my all-time favorite series OZARK, this character makes Russ seem like an evil lightweight. In ALONE, his demeanor does not change no matter his mood. That means he is laser focused on what he has planned for Jessica and perhaps the chase is more exciting than he lets on.
A small role for Heald but I was yelling at him the whole time, trust me you will be too!
Magnet Releasing is a part of Magnolia Pictures that specializes in films from the vanguard of horror, action, comedy and Asian cinema. It is also the home of classics like Tomas Alfredson’s LET THE RIGHT ON IN, Ti West’s THE HOUSE OF THE DEVIL, Andre Ovredal’s TROLLHUNTER, Neil Marshall’s sword and sandals bloodbath CENTURION and Tony Jaa’s ONG BAK trilogy. Recent released include the terrifying anthologies V/H/S and V/H/S/2, Xan Cassavettes’ stylish vampire film KISS OF THE DAMNED, and the sci-fi thriller THE LAST DAYS ON MARS. Upcoming films include Ti West’s THE SACRAMENT and to find out more of what is to come please visit www.magnetreleasingfilms.com.
ALONE is the kind of film I love in that it’s a mixture of nail biting, yelling at the screen, calling out things like “I wouldn’t have done that!” with your brain yelling “yea, you would have”. The fact that it is broken up into four points is like a tease as to what is coming without actually giving anything away. Its having a cliff hanger without actually hanging but yet you are – get it?
Having a minimal cast is always interesting to me because it is up to, in this case, two actors to bring the store meaning, keep our attention and engage us to keep watching. ALONE does all three surrounded by a third character – the forest. All around Jessica and the Man is this lush, green, swaying trees and life giving river full of hiding places and weapons – know that!
ALONE is an awesome way to end the summer and prepare for the Halloween season, whatever form that might take. There are twists, turns and our own frights of the mind to contend with in this film. The possibility of this actually happening is out there so take heed and a few lessons from our heroine!
In the end – what are you running from?