Skip to content

John’s Horror Corner: Dashcam (2021), the delightfully wild found footage horror that keeps getting gorier and crazier.

June 24, 2022

MY CALL: If you enjoy found footage and impressive lower budget fare (that never feels low budget), this is for you. This film is wildly bonkers and boasts more impressive and gory special effects than we generally expect from the found footage subgenre. Plus, the characters are well written and very likable. Strong rec.

Driving around streaming live improv-rap to amuse her fans, Annie (Annie Hardy) is a social media entertainer living her best (and often hilariously rude) life during the pandemic lockdown. Annie is quite likeable and equally annoying from the start, very grounded and funny, raunchy and pushy. Annie reunites with her old vlog-mate Stretch (Amar Chadha-Patel; Willow, Doom: Annihilation) in the UK as a diversion from the monotony of Covid life.

An interesting dimension to the film is Annie’s subscribers’ comments perpetually populating the lower corner of the screen. Sometimes you read them when a scene is slow, other times the comments cue you to look at the screen to see what they’re talking about. It’s a mildly distracting dynamic that I find enhances my experience. We likewise observe the polarized range of safety considerations and conspiracy beliefs revolving around the Covid pandemic, from mask rage to preaching propaganda.

When a stranger pays Annie to transport an obviously sick older woman to a specific location, Annie’s day takes an interesting turn. The old woman is disoriented, incontinent, and doesn’t seem to speak English (or at all). Far weirder are the inexplicable occurrences that surround this old woman.

But oh my God the incredibly gross and gruesome things that happen to and around this old lady are jarring! The characters scream and I find myself slack-jawed, lost in the lunacy. There are multiple POV car crashes, bloody shenanigans, and some positively demonic goings-on as well. This movie also features an amazingly gory arm-break. Wow! Much better gore and effects than we generally expect from the lower budget subgenre of found footage. Many of the visuals capture powerful images from classic supernatural concepts, other brief monstrous images leave me wondering what the crap I just saw (in an awesome way). And like a Sam Raimi movie, Annie Hardy and her co-stars are really put through the ringer by director Rob Savage (Host). Aspects of this film fondly reminded me of Brightburn (2019), Willow Creek (2013) and As Above So Below (2014). All the while the movie leaves you in the dark as to whether this some sort of pandemic zombie movie, demonic possession movie, supernatural somethiorother… we don’t know and I don’t care.

I liked all the characters, whose dynamic relationships kept things entertaining even in the earliest scenes. Once the horror truly begins, this film manages to consistently remain incredibly tense while still occasionally funny. I was quite taken off guard many times and I never felt the low budget woes of found footage here either. There’s a lot of blood, and anything not clearly in frame (thus saving money on effects) is very understandable given the panicked hat-cam situation. This was good! I am so pleased with how this turned out.

4 Comments leave one →
  1. June 25, 2022 7:34 am

    Excited to watch this! Thanks for the rec.

    • John Leavengood permalink
      June 25, 2022 8:43 am

      I only watched this thanks to Alex’s recommendation from @btvcast Beyond the Void. I would’ve breezed past this probably. Such a pleasant surprise.

  2. June 26, 2022 4:53 pm

    I don’t usually care for found footage movies, but this one has intrigued me enough I want to give it a try.

    • John Leavengood permalink
      June 27, 2022 6:11 pm

      To be fair, I like the subgenre. But this strikes me as the FF movie for those who normally don’t care for the shaky corners cut by the subgenre.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: