Fiona (Britt Harris) claims to be suffering from the curse of Bodie, and she’s got to get back to the scene of the crime to exorcise the problem. Ghost Town is the 15 minute horror, and that’s Fiona’s destination. No doubt, the Molly Muse film delivers the spook and sends a chill. The unraveling doesn’t go much beyond what’s expected, though. But a ghost story it is, and whether that’s enough depends on how much depth you require.
Either way, Fiona and Kimmi (Muse) are broken down on the side of the road, and in their helpless state, they are relegated to the middle of nowhere. Tumbleweeds and the greenery dulled by the ever present encroachment of dirt, the lonely expanse of the landscape is framed well by Ian Stout’s cinematography. In turn, we see just how far we are from everything. So does a hallowed score (Kevin Timothy O’Connor) that could serve as an echo chamber for the mystery.
Fiona, on the other hand, has a much more prevalent preoccupation. The co-lead juggles and grasps a shiny pyrite looking rock, and soon enough, Harris radiates irrationality. The rock is obviously the source, and the actress’s piercing delivery almost makes us forget the vast solitude all around.
Aches, pains and a series of maladies are all a result of the apparition that she believes has taken hold. No real choice, Kimmi is consigned to this trek, and Muse does her best to mask the doubts of her character. She soldiers on by playing the role of the good friend, and the patience Muse emotes is almost superhuman. Still, she can’t completely hide her annoyance, but the kind, understanding face scores one for this world.
A long look nonetheless, the sojourn to Ghost Town matches in kind and wears on both travelers. On the viewer too, Harris doesn’t let us escape her whining, and she may just be a lunatic without any help from the outer-worldly.
As a result, we can’t really be sure this is a ghost story, and the uncertainty keeps us dialed in.
Thankfully, they arrive and maybe the destination will alleviate Fiona’s angst and – more importantly – ours.
A series of old, abandoned buildings, their presence begs an explanation. The cluster is grouped as though they were erected for a Clint Eastwood spaghetti western. But those being movies, these structures are more modern, and ghost towns really died with the Old West.
So where does this decrepit locale come from, who lived there, and why wasn’t it torn down? The vacuous score then returns and reiterates the mystery. The characters enter nonetheless, and the creaks of the ailing wood flooring double downs the question.
The interior is next. The ample supply of artifacts makes it hard to identify, not only when life took place here, but what was going on. All together Kimmi shifts gears, and now sees adventure in this enigma.
Getting into the spirit, she forgets the mission and that this is actually a ghost story. Always a mistake, the forces respond by going boo, and you’ll know it. A little more explanation to match the mystery would be nice, but in this case, it will have to do.