C47Houston Flix Review:

"The Shadow Behind You"



A Killer is on the loose and has managed to join the cast and crew of a production company making a movie on an isolated Island housing a dilapidated and haunted mental hospital. With no where to run, who can you trust and what is actually happening in this feature psychological/thriller by award-winning Houston Director San Banarje titled "The Shadow Behind You"?

Written by San Banarje and Trisha Ray, "The Shadow Behind You" is a feature motion picture that has several twists and turns. The movie follows a team of filmmakers who are shooting a horror film on a remote Island where a dilapidated mental hospital, (known for its paranormal activity and the disappearances of several people), may be holding secrets and messing with the mind.

The only way to get to this Island is by ferry and along for the ride is a serial killer who has joined the cast and the crew. (Yes, the team is making an independent movie.)

The moment they get to the hospital, personalities start to change, and, now everyone is acting just a little stranger. When the executive producer demands that the male lead role be replaced by a more affluent, but not talented backup actor, all hell breaks loose with the Director, who is trying his best to get along with his DP, whom he can't understand. Stress levels increase when tempers flare.

Making things worse, is a pharmaceutical salesman by the name of AJ (played by Omar Scanu) who will get you high for a price, has plenty to clam the nerves and, just in time, as a hurricane has closed the ferry back to the mainland. Production on the movie has stopped and now the production team is stranded.

As the night progresses and with no where to run, several members of the production team go missing.  Theories abound as to what is happening. Is it the serial killer? is it the house? Is it the drugs?

When the storm breaks a detective (played by San Banarje) comes in and finds a script that lays out each of the murders in the order they happen, except for one.  Written by the productions scriptwriter (played by Trisha Ray), a plan is created to catch the culprit. But, can they solve this mystery?

In commenting on the story itself, "The Shadow Behind You" is a difficult story to follow and the audience will be scratching their heads as to what is going on in this story.  This is one of those movies where you have to watch it several times to get it. There are numerous sub-plots going on that do not necessarily flow from one to another to the extent of giving the audience some remote clue as to what is taking place.  The movie starts off with a murder, switches over to a party, then traveling on a ferry to a remote Island,  a production crew making a movie, a haunted mental institution and so forth and so on.  That being said, the story did remind me of the 1980 Stanley Kubrick and Stephen King movie "The Shining".  This movie, "The Shadow", dwells into the human psyche, but just when you think you have figured it out and who is the culprit in the disappearances of some of the team, there is a twist. But, unlike "The Shining" this movie was lacking a main character that could guide you through to the end of the movie and eventually make some sense in what was going on and happening. 

"Telling a Story motivates me to make a film. I have been a film aficionado from my childhood, so filmmaking is my hobby, my passion and my profession. Filmmaking is a constant for me and a way of life."

Director San Banarje

Technically, the production and post production team did a great job with this movie (with the exception of one noticeable attribute). The sound levels were consistent, deep and rich throughout the entire movie.  The foley work was a bit rushed and sometimes didn't match the scene or was non-existent. The Set-design was creative. Sound design was equally creative. The movies' score was complimentary to the "feel" of the movie. Editing was seamless ( I didn't even notice the transitions) and moved the movie effortlessly. The camera work was creative, not stagnant and moved the audience visually. The one complaint we did have with the movie was the "focus". Rack it up to aspect ratio or theater equipment, but half of the movie was blurry. We have come across this same type of problem with several indie made movies.  WE understand the technique used (blurriness) to create suspense or in this case, a "haunting" look, but too much of it will cause one to think that of two people behind each camera... one of them needs glasses.  This was particularly the case in this movie. It was as if the auto focus was on and the sensor was focusing on the wrong point.  This was very distracting.  Another, technique used by the production team was the use of a subject walking from a distance in total blurriness to focal point. This was used numerous times. It could have been the "haunting" aspect of the hospital that the director was trying to convey, but, it doesn't work very well and created a frustration. Perhaps that is what was intended. 

In all, the story was difficult to follow and the 50 percent of the movie was blurry... two components that made this movie hard to watch and enjoy. Which was too bad, this was an interesting story and one that could have been really entertaining and frightening.  

We have seen some of the work Mr. Banarje creates and this is his first venture into this type of story with psychological undertones and twists. We think he did a great job in making a movie that people will want to see and from what we could tell, "The Shadow Behind You", although a difficult story to capture, was an interesting movie to watch. It was kind of surreal. 

C47Houston News & Entertainment Magazine was invited to the private Cast/Crew/Media screening and we rated this movie on the TSIRS scale. 

C47Houston rated this movie a strong 4.3 out of 5 stars on the TSIRS scale. 

We also grabbed some pictures. You can see them at: (coming soon)

San Banarje graced the cover of C47Houston News & Entertainment Magazine's July/August 2012 issue. You can order that issue at: 

Also, Director San Banarje was the cover of our WEEKLY publication Issue 16. You can order your copy at: http://www.c47houston.com/C47Weeklys2014u16.htm 

Title: The Shadow Behind You

Running time: 90-minutes

Writers: San Banarje and Trisha Ray

Screen Play by: San Banarje and Trisha Ray

Genre: Thriller/suspense/psychological

Production Company: Lake Camp Productions and Next Actor Studio

Director: San Banarje 

Camera: Arri

Produced by: San Banarje and Trisha Ray

Cinematographer: San Banarje

Editor: Trisha Ray

Makeup: Laura Plata

Sound: Brian Dean Hoff, Christopher Mullins and Kent Ohler

Casting: Sam Hoger, Juniper Jairala, Christina Armpriester, Trisha Ray, Thiago Paes, San Banarje, Kristen Perry, Matt Lorenzo, Eddie Aguirre, Jasmine Darby, Omar Scanu, Esther Ekanem, Elise Martin, Katia Rodriquez, Gary Chisholm, Brenda Pentecost, Marco Patino, Derek Gaskamp, Aaren Wheeler, Diya Thapliyal, Pelin, Adesh Thapliyal, Aracely Green, Guigi Carminati, Zoie Steen, Adnre Francois, Onyinye Ewulu, Allison Geary, Chris Smith, Sam Zamir, Sebastian Gomez, Ash Thapliyal, Jason Elliott, Tyra Terry, Lynn Brown, Dave Amyx, Alonzo Williams and Evelynn Hastings. 

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/shadowbehindyou

IMDB: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2817548/

Youtube: http://youtu.be/9HAGlBNA--k 

Website: www.ShadowTheFilm.com




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