A film I hadn’t heard of initially until the press release for the blu ray release dropped into my email inbox. and having now seen the film, I cant urge you enough to check out Australian horror Lake Mungo which now has its first ever UK Blu-ray release as a stunning Limited Edition Box set (released on 7th June 2021. This cult favourite from director Joel Anderson, arrived with a host of brand new, fascinating special features from specialist in the field Second Sight Films.
Looking back into the post release of the 2008 film, this sadly underseen documentary-style chiller made far reaching ripples in the film underground, thrilling horror fans and inspiring budding filmmakers across the globe and establishing itself as a bona fide cult classic that until now, wasn’t the easiest film to find. Now the Lake Mungo gets the release it deserves that sees brand new interviews with cast and crew; filmmaker fans Justin Benson & Aaron Moorhead and director du jour Host’s Rob Savage (in a wonderful 17 minute interview with the filmmaker) a brand new commentary, video essays and archive material.
So what is Lake Mungo about?
When sixteen-year-old Alice Palmer ( Talia Zucker) tragically drowns while swimming in the local dam, her grieving family start to experience a series of strange, inexplicable events and become increasingly unsettled. Seeking out the help of a parapsychologist, they learn that Alice had been living through extremely troubling, disturbing times and hiding deep, dark secrets. Now they are desperate to know what haunted their daughter and what is happening to them.
Lake Mungo straight from the start, gave me a creepy ‘off’ feeling, the way the film is put together just has an instant atmosphere that will draw you you and surround you. It has no major set pieces, it has no large budget and trick scares, but Lake Mungo is one of the most chilling atmospheres that I have seen in a film to date. The films storytelling and performances give off a brilliant ‘camp fire ghost story’ vibe and to say this worked for me is a huge understatement. Even after the credits have finished, i just knew that this film was going to stick with me and become one of those films that you spend the time recommending to anyone that likes horror movies, but also anyone who likes ghost stories.
So as with any creepy as heel ghost related film that has gotten under my skin. I’m not headed to find a comedy so that when I close my eyes and try to sleep in a couple of hours. I’m not haunted by some of the things my brain has been inhabited by from the film Lake Mungo.
Archive audio commentary by Producer David Rapsey and DoP John Brawley
New audio commentary by Alexandra Heller-Nicholas and Emma Westwood
Captured Spirits: an interview with DoP John Brawley
Ghost in the Machine: an interview with Producer David Rapsey
A Cop and a Friend: an interview with Actors Carole Patullo & James Lawson
Kindred Spirits: Filmmakers Justin Benson & Aaron Moorhead on Lake Mungo
Hosting Spirits: Filmmaker Rob Savage on Lake Mungo
Simulacra and Spirits: a video essay by film writer Josh Nelson
Autopsy of a Family Home: a video essay by filmmaker Joseph Wallace
LIMITED EDITION CONTENTS
Perfect-bound booklet with new essays by Sarah Appleton, Simon Fitzjohn, Rich Johnson, Mary Beth McAndrews and Shellie McMurdo, interview with actor James Lawson by Alexandra Heller-Nicholas plus rare behind-the-scenes photos
Three collectors’ art cards