Ever since Paranormal Activity became a hit Hollywood jumped on the bandwagon and the found footage genre became a mainstream event and they’ve all varied in quality but for the most part they haven’t been anything I would recommend to anyone to see unless you are just a extreme fan of the genre. The exorcism aspect of these types of films is especially tired because it follows the same formula. Woman is sick, very strong foreshadowing that it is something supernatural that all the characters ignore until it is too late, scary things happen until it very suddenly ends, roll credits.
The Taking of Debra Logan follows a documentary crew as they are filming a doc for Alzheimer and what starts out as your typical possession film turns into something else entirely and it’s all the better for it. Sarah (Anne Ramsay), who is taking care of her mother Debra (Jill Larson) agrees to let a film crew crew follow her mother because the bills are starting to pile and she hopes it will bring awareness to the disease that is eating her mothers brain. Everything seems fine until Debra, who very quickly, falls into the second stage, that Sarah and the film crew begin to learn more about Debra and her past that they start to realize she is suffering from much more then an illness.
What I liked most about Debra is how the film starts out you in believing it’s your typical possession film until it quickly takes a left turn and pulls you into a mystery about what is trying to take Debra and why. By taking this approach, it adds a new layer to an already tired format in a part of the film it would start to get boring. The scares are fresh and it largely avoids the characters from doubting what is actually happening to Debra, save for one character. The weakness of these type of films is the characters doing mostly dumb things, like not checking the footage, trying to make excuses for the things they saw, etc and the film has these characters but it also calls them out on it.
It’s hard to review this movie because I don’t want to give much away because the fun of it is that mystery and watching it unfold. The Taking of Debra Logan is streaming on Netflix and if you are a fan of the possession films I do recommend checking it out.