Miles (Clark Freeman) is afraid of everything. Most of all, he’s afraid of dying. In an attempt to squash his fear of death Miles puts out an ad in a newspaper. He will give anyone that can prove the existence of life after death $30,000. After receiving hundreds of responses, Miles and his mother seek out a few of the potentially real leads. As he goes deeper and deeper into the unknown, Miles will learn that some questions should be left unanswered.
This film has a truly compelling story. Most people wonder if there is something after we die. Some people believe in heaven, reincarnation, or ghosts while others think there is nothing after death. There are two key plot points that make this story stand out. The first is the reason for Miles’ quest. He believes that if he can find proof of life after death, then he will no longer live his life in constant fear of dying in one way or another. This is a completely believable concept, yet it is something that I have never seen used in any other film. The second plot point that I loved was the juxtaposition of Miles and his mother, Charlotte (Annette O’Toole). While the two are on this search together, they are on it for completely different reasons. Miles wants to find proof that there is something after you die. Charlotte not only doesn’t believe there is anything after death, but she also wants to go on the search with Miles so she can prove this to him. It added an interesting dynamic having these two opposing viewpoints throughout the film. It was especially effective when Miles was so quick to believe people. His mother would act as the voice of reason and make sure no one would take advantage of her son.
There were some surprisingly good scares in We Go On. While this is a film that is definitely more plot driven, there were several scenes that made me jump. It doesn’t rely on things popping out at you non-stop throughout the film. In most of the scenes as the story progresses there is tension that keeps you on the edge of your seat, waiting for what happens next. This tactic is very effective. The scares that make you jump seem to come out of nowhere because you are so focused on what is happening to the main characters along their journey.
Even if a film has a great story, the acting can make or break a film. We Go On had an all around incredible cast of actors. Clark Freeman (YellowBrickRoad, Alpha Must Die) was absolutely phenomenal as Miles. From the moment you see him on the screen you can feel his fear. Freeman manages to maintain this state of fear throughout the film, without going over the top with his performance. This is something that could have easily turned into more of a caricature, but Freeman brought to life a believable character. Annette O’Toole (Smallville, It) was superb as Miles’ mother, Charlotte. One thing I have always loved about O’Toole is that she tends to play strong female characters. This role was no exception for her. O’Toole’s character showed sympathy and compassion for her son, while also acting as his protector. She really grounds the story by playing the perpetual skeptic. One of the more surprising performances for me came from Jay Dunn (Ex-Girlfriends). He plays Nelson, a man that potentially can prove the existence of life after death to Miles. What intrigued me about Dunn’s performance is that I somehow found his character both endearing and exceptionally creepy. How Dunn managed to pull this off I couldn’t tell you.
Being more of a ghost film, there wasn’t a need for a ton of special effects. I appreciated that the filmmakers chose to go for more of a subtle look with the makeup applied to the ghosts. For the most part there were only slight differences that would make it so you could tell the difference between the living and the dead. What made this so effective is that it made Miles question his reality. He was never sure if he was seeing a ghost or a real person. There were two scenes that used a bit more practical effects. I don’t want to give anything important to the story, so I will simply say that these two scenes used smaller practical effects in a way that was disturbing and worked well with the story.
I went into this movie knowing virtually nothing about it. I came out feeling like I had just seen an original film that was both thought-provoking and frightening. Aside from a few lingering questions I have regarding the rules about human-ghost interaction, this film delivered on pretty much everything I could have hoped for. We Go On is a ghost story for the intellectual horror fan who wants it all; an interesting plot, great acting, multiple scares, and twists you never saw coming. It is the kind of film you think about long after it’s over, and you will come back to again and again.
OVERALL RATING: 9/10