Amber’s Descent

Seattle finally couldn’t hold her; survivor of a possessive relationship in which her boyfriend felt he could not compete with her success which left her hospitalised, Amber waves goodbye to the city for a new start in Kalispell and its promise of big mountains and bigger dreams, greeted upon arrival by the real estate agent at the Murphy House, perhaps too big for her needs with four bedrooms but offering solitude for her work.

They key selling point, of course, is the beautiful antique piano; her days of making ends meet by teaching music long past, Amber Waltz is a composer of serious music, a heavy bust of Beethoven glowering down at her from the mantel, yet her muse has departed her, replaced by another spirit altogether; doors open and close, papers seemingly move, and noises are heard behind walls and beneath floorboards.

The flashbacks to her traumatic assault blending with her nightmares, Amber is plagued by nocturnal visitations of a strange woman, and by day her handyman Jim is becoming overly familiar and increasingly creepy; is she simply sensitive and protecting herself, understandable in the circumstances, or is there genuinely something in the house with her?

Shot in and around Summerland in Okanagan, British Columbia, Amber’s Descent is directed by Micheal Bafaro from a script co-written by his frequent collaborator Michael Mitton who also stars as Jim, an annoying fly dressed in ill-fitting clothes and a scrawny as a twig whose advances Amber repeatedly swats, considerably less threatening than Nathaniel Vossen, another Bafaro associate who appears as Amber’s disturbed ex, Mark.

Glacially drifting through the halls with an expression which stretches from perplexed to pained, her arms hanging by her side in the flowing dresses which constitute her wardrobe, Kayla Stanton is the titular Amber, her descent marked by an understandable lassitude, the script directionless as it tries to build mystery around occurrences which are part and parcel of living in an old house and menace from lifeless performances.

Echoing classics of the horror genre, The Changeling with its spirit which communicates through music, the unseen crying child of The Haunting, the attempted blessing of the house of The Amityville Horror, the minimalism of Amber’s Descent matches her sparse compositions and lacks originality and inspiration, Amber’s inevitable unravelling prompting a final act segue into a dramatic passage of dubious explanations which sit awkwardly alongside what has gone before.

Amber’s Descent is available on digital download from Tuesday 23rd March



Show Buttons
Hide Buttons