By Laurie Coker
We Are What We Are – the title of Jim Mickel’s bizarre thriller might, on one hand, seem simply a statement of the obvious, but sometimes “what we are” is downright strange. Fortunately for Mickel, I like weird, and in some cases, such as this, works – for the most part. But like a meal at supper time, not matter how satisfying the first courses, an unsatisfying finale can leave a poor taste.
Mickel sets his creepy film in a single place – the home of the Parkers, a small family, a single father his three daughters Iris, Rose and Emma. The Parkers have a sinister secret, one that is threatened by a storm that keeps them home bound. Iris (Ambryn Childers) and Rose (Julia Garner) must go beyond the creepy ancient customs of this bizarre family. I shall not spoil the secret, but trust me, when I say – YIKES! Really?!
Mickel and his cast create a substantially spine-chilling and somber tone for most of the film and as weird as I found it, I sat mesmerized by the sheer strangeness of the proceedings. The film has no clear time frame and for a while, I wondering what kinds of people live like this when and more importantly why. It’s in its final moments that We Are What We Are leaps from bizarre and unsettling to even more unnerving and absurd. I’ll place a C+ in my grade book. While mist is done quite well, its not a film for the feint at heart, but for those who like the peculiar.