Man Underground Movie Review
Written by Ali Chappell
Released by Indican Pictures
Written and directed by Michael Borowiec and Sam Marine
2016, 95 minutes, Rated R
Released on August 15th, 2017
George Basil as Willem Koda
Andy Rocco as Todd Muckle
Pamela Fila as Flossie Ferguson
Felix Hagen as Francis
I first saw Man Underground at the 2016 Fantasia Film Festival and I went into thinking it would be something fun, maybe a little campy, maybe even a little dark. However, I left the theatre with a feeling of, “Wow, that movie was straight up amazing”.
We open the story on Willem, a simple man telling an audience of maybe five people about how he used to work as a geologist for the United States government, dealing with the tunnels underneath the Nevada desert that the government held aliens in and used them as slaves. Unfortunately, everything he says makes him sound crazy and very few people believe him. Willem is the embodiment of the socially awkward loner who eats alone at a diner every night just to complain about the food. This is where he meets Flossie, a young girl who is back home living with her parents, aspiring to be an actress.
Willem’s friend Todd decides that maybe Willem could get his story across better if he turned his stories into a movie that he writes, directs and stars in. This is where he gets the idea to offer a role to Flossie. The three have a great friendship, like they are making a movie to kill time in a small town; Willem is just very intense about it. Man Underground is amazing in that it leaves you guessing. Sure, Willem sounds crazy, but maybe there is some truth to what he is saying. In one scene, he explains how his body got covered in markings, and then he was discharged from the unit. However, later on he takes off his shirt to show that he is in fact covered with these markings. Did he actually meet aliens or was it something else? You never truly find out, but you are left wondering that maybe the government is hiding something from us.
I can’t praise this movie enough. George Basil is so convincing as Willem that you have got to think he must be that guy in real life. His interactions with everyone in this movie are just perfection; you can cut the tension with a knife. Pamela Filia as Flossie is amazing as well and does a stunning performance as her role in being a struggling actress and waitress. She is just plain adorable. She is everyone’s friend. Andy Rocco, who plays Todd, is a joy; I just want to give credit too. Him and his animal print t-shirts and hilarious honesty about Flossie’s boyfriend Francis and how much he hates him. He is just a dollop of sunshine in this movie. Okay, so I basically just praised the whole cast. Whatever. They deserve it and you’re not my boss.
Man Underground is an instant cult classic that deals with more than just aliens and conspiracy theories. It deals with friendship. Also, they makes it look so easy to just make a low-budget film with three people and one camera. Man Underground deserves 5 stars for that aspect of the story alone.