The Endless is Justin Benson and Aaron Moorhead’s excellent sci-fi horror fantasy UFO death-cult adventure.
In the Loopby Alexa Dalby
CAUTION: Here be spoilers
Creators of The Endless Justin Benson and Aaron Moorhead (Spring) star as – almost themselves – Justin and Aaron, two brothers who return to the UFO death-cult community they grew up in when, out of the blue, they receive a mysterious video message. Though they escaped from its remote, self-contained village ten years ago, neither of them have really integrated into the outside world since then; their daily lives seem mundane and boring in comparison. Maybe they miss belonging or the organic food or maybe they’re still seeking some kind of closure? They need to find out.
What they discover when they get there is that everything and everyone is still the same. It’s a community of happy, shiny people where, spookily unremarked, no one except Justin and Aaron seems to have aged in the intervening period. And accepting an invitation to stay the night with them turns out not to have been such a good idea after all as the community waits round the camp fire for ‘the Ascension’. Bizarre events and strange planetary conjunctions occur as elements of modern technology that seem incongruous in such a back-to-nature setting take on a disturbing role. Time seems to be standing still, or maybe going into reverse, or on an endless loop. You can check out of Camp Arcadia but can you ever really leave?
Working with what looks like virtually no budget, Benson and Moorhead’s film is a beguiling, sometimes puzzlingly inexplicable, gonzo mixture of late-night genres: part road movie, part sci-fi and part Bill and Ted’s excellent post-modern horror adventure.
The Endless screened in the 61st BFI London Film Festival and is released on 29 June 2018 in the UK.