Review: ABSENTIA (2011)

ReviewMovie Doug Jones by brians



Mike Flanagan’s Absentia is one of those rare treats you find in indie film. The film focuses on two sisters Callie (Katie Parker) and Tricia (Courtney Bell) who reunite and are both dealing with some personal issues. What’s going on here is Tricia is dealing with the loss of her husband Daniel (Morgan Peter Brown) from seven years ago who suddenly reappears and Callie just can't stay in one place too long and is trying to stay away from the bottle, from what I understand.

The events that take place throughout the film lead to a dark journey for all parties involved, especially the two sisters.  Remember the book “Billy Goats Gruff”? Yeah, let’s just say instead of a bridge there’s a tunnel and there’s something in the tunnel!  But what? Well, I can tell you that Doug Jones (Hellboy, Legion, Pan’s Labyrinth) is in the tunnel but that’s all I’m giving up.

Absentia reminds me a little of Mimic because, well it just does. There are also creepy elements in the film that rival films like “Fire in the Sky”, “The Fourth Kind” and “Paranormal Activity”. These dark, shadowy moments in Absentia are key to the story and to me is what drive the film. You just keep waiting to see what’s going to happen next, and then there’s that damn tunnel!

On dissecting the film, Mike Flanagan delivers his story on screen to perfection, especially for an indie film! The film runs about 90 minutes and  is shot very well and crisp and the sound is perfectly clear which is a rarity in indie most films. On FX, there isn’t much because the story is so strong the film really doesn’t need it, but what little we do see fits oh so good!

Bottom line is, Absentia is a dark journey you just can’t miss yet may not return from! This is a great horror film!


Tricia's husband has been missing for seven years. Her younger sister Callie comes to live with her as the pressure mounts to finally declare him "dead in absentia." As Tricia sifts through the wreckage and tries to move on with her life, Callie finds herself drawn to an ominous tunnel near the house. As she begins to link it to other mysterious disappearances, it becomes clear that his presumed death might be anything but "natural."


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