Gone, but not Forgotten. Trailer review for “Phoenix Forgotten”

I admit, I’m not a big fan of movie trailers. It seems that these days they give away too much of the plot, and I like to be surprised by a film. But once in a while a trailer still has the right balance of elements to draw me in and get me excited about a new release. The new promo for Phoenix Forgotten is that kind of trailer.

The trailer eases you into the set up for the film, which is based on a true story of mysterious lights reported by a number of people in Phoenix, Arizona twenty years ago. We are quickly introduced to the people who witnessed the supposed UFOs in March, 1997. The footage reels you into the mystery element of the story, before it plunges you into the action and suspense. Three teenagers hit the road in search of answers, since no one can explain the weird series of lights. In their quest for more information, they encounter danger. Scenes of shaky hand-held video from the point of view of the teens is intercut with shots of lights and odd visuals that you can’t quite identify or put into context. What we do know from the real life story is that those three teens were never seen again.

Justin Barber makes his feature film directorial debut helming this Ridley Scott-produced sci-fi/horror picture. Barber’s previous experience includes directing and writing the short film Leaving Baghdad, and working as a producer on several films, including Barry Jenkins’ 2008 debut as writer-director, Medicine for Melancholy. But he got his start in the business as a graphics and VFX guy, and went to school with co-producer Wes Ball at Florida State. It was Ball who teamed up with screenwriter T.S. Nowlin (The Maze Runner) to develop the story. This trailer promises a film that combines The Blair Witch Project, The X Files and “Catfish.

Phoenix Forgotten hits theaters April 21st. Watch the trailer below and tell us what you think.

Patty Williamson

I teach media-related stuff at Central Michigan University, and have been ruining film for students for nearly 20 years.

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