A few months ago, I took the opportunity to watch a movie that I would not have normally jumped into right away. However, I do force myself to venture into the unknown from time to time for good measure. I decided to give ‘Lunopolis’ a try. It was written and directed by Matthew Avant and released in 2009.
“The film is presented in found footage style and takes place in the weeks preceding the rumored events of the 2012 End of Days prophecies. Two documentary filmmakers discover a mysterious device and begin to unravel a conspiracy involving the moon, time travel, and a very powerful organization who will stop at nothing to protect their secret.”
The director’s approach at framing the story is not new or unique as it uses the premise of ‘Hey, I found these video tapes of these guys who found something weird and I have pieced them together and you won’t believe what they found. I wonder why these guys are now missing …?’. The same approach was used in ‘Trollhunter’ (Norwegian: Trolljegeren) written by André Øvredal. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not knocking it, but you can’t use it as a major plot element in movies too frequently, or in close release proximity to one another otherwise people just roll their eyes. I actually thought both used the technique effectively and I would also recommend Trollhunter for those looking for something a little different.
Lunopolis had the look and feel of a low-budget indy movie, well, because it was–extremely low as a matter of fact. But that is not a bad thing, especially in the world of high budget movies that do not always make a return on their investment for what is arguably a minimal increase in production quality. I must say that the special effects that were used were integrated so well that they looked completely natural and not out of place with the grainy look and feel of the production. So, I give a ‘two thumbs up’ on the special effects!
Based upon an obscure set of coordinates on the back of a photo, the two lead characters (wannabe sleuths of the fringe) find a piece of hardware that was left in the basement (which very much resembled an expansive underground government lab) of a seemingly dilapidated, and quickly sinking, shack in the middle of a swamp, and spend the movie trying to determine its function and who might have made it. Twists and tales from former engineers that they are able to find and their own tests would lead you to believe what they found was a rudimentary time machine. However, through their journey they stumble right into the middle of quite possibly the most powerful cult in history.
Toward the end of the movie the story line devolves into the world of causality, and the creation of a multiverse as a ramification of doinking around with history via time travel. From my understanding of how it all works, they seem to get most of it right, but some aspects that were critical to the storyline didn’t quite follow the latest theories and have to be excused for the sake of the film.
It will require the watcher to do a little thinking of your own to figure out some of the subtleties; no spoon-feeding allowed here, in which case it might not be for everyone. However, if you are looking for something off the beaten Hollywood path, I say give it a try.
Terry R. Hill