The Unraveling is a scary and realistic look at how all-consuming drug addiction can be!
At the heart of The Unraveling you’ll find a very raw and honest story about addiction. Anyone who’s known an addict of any kind, will no doubt be able to recognize this story. The addict always seems to believe their own lies, and as a friend or family member, it seems like you simply cannot win. They’ll say whatever you want to hear, but when you know it’s a lie, it doesn’t really help the situation.
This is where we start the story of The Unraveling. We know Michael is actively using drugs and staying out all night. And so we also know that he’s lying to his very pregnant future wife, Jess, when he tells her he was working an extra shift. These scenes are wonderfully laid back and honest. Instead of anger and shouting, Jess is trying to reason with him, but clearly also knows it won’t work.
Michael meanwhile seems to think he’s in the clear. All addicts think they hide their abuse – even when it’s obvious to the rest of the world. After Michael leaves for work the story takes a turn and quickly becomes intensely frightening for everyone involved. Though, of course, the biggest fear for Michael revolves around the lack of drugs. Even he will come to realize that this is actually the least of his problems in his current predicament.
The reason The Unraveling works so well – and it really does – is because it stays true to the core of the story. This is about the unraveling of a person’s relationship with addiction. Not in a metaphorical or “awesome” way, but simply shown in a very honest way. It’s not pretty…
… but it’s definitely not boring either. Also, yes, there are extra elements that make this a definite horror mystery movie, so you don’t have to worry about that.
The Unraveling is carried forward by the personal story and relationships
While lots of strange and scary things do take place, The Unraveling is all about this one person’s journey, and his relationship with those close to him. Obviously, this also means that overall, the cast absolutely have to be able to pull this off. That includes scenes that aren’t filled with dialogue, because sometimes words simply are not necessary. We know all we need to know from the way friends look at each other. Including being able to recognize how truly terrified or broken they are!
And the cast in this movie is stellar. Especially the lead character, Michael, who is portrayed by Zack Gold, works extremely well. And really, if we don’t believe him then nothing else will matter, so trust that this movie works!
The script was written by first time feature film screen writer Justin S. Munroe. He wrote the script with Thomas Jakobsen, who also directed the movie. A debut for him on both counts, but that certainly does not show in any way. The Unraveling is a powerful movie, that has an important story and message, but manages to still be relevant as a horror mystery as well. A truly remarkable accomplishment. The fact that he’s from my native Denmark just makes me a little prouder to be Danish right now. Unfortunately, as of this time, we don’t know what’s next from Thomas Jakobsen. Whatever it is, I will definitely want to watch it after having watched The Unraveling.
The Unraveling is still playing at film festivals worldwide. It premiered at CPH PIX last year followed by Screamfest Horror Film Festival, and played at London’s FrightFest just last month, where it was voted “The Best Plot Twists” by britflicks.com.
Director: Thomas Jakobsen
Writer: Thomas Jakobsen, Justin S. Monroe
Cast: Zack Gold, Jason Tobias, Bennett Viso
Michael’s heroin addiction is beginning to test his limits, but when he is kidnapped and taken into the woods, he soon discovers just how far those limits will go.