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Beware the Slenderman

Quebec Premiere
  • USA
  • 2016
  • 117 mins
  • DCP
  • English
Official Selection: SXSW 2016, Hot Docs 2016, Montclair Film Festival 2016

"Intense, chilling... scarier than most current horror films” - Brad Henderson, POPSHIFTER

“One of those rare documentaries that you simply can’t not watch, horrific and deeply disturbing though it may be” - Marc Savlov, AUSTIN CHRONICLE

On May 31, 2014, two girls in a small Wisconsin town committed an irredeemable act, a crime so vicious even a parent’s love finds it hard to forgive. While walking in the woods, they brutally stabbed a fellow student and left her there to bleed to death. Quickly apprehended, the guilty girls’ interrogations leave the authorities baffled. They confessed to having committed the murder at the behest of a supernatural being that is haunting not only their dreams and but also the shadowy corners of the internet. They called him the Slender Man. A faceless bogeyman with tentacles for a body, the Slender Man made his first appearance on the Something Awful forum in 2009. While fake pictures abound all over the internet, some web surfers claim that he is all too real. Rumour has it that it is impossible to escape when one crosses his path. For two teenage girls, the rumour was strong enough for them to perform a fatal ritual that left friends and family desperately facing an uncertain future.

In the documentary BEWARE THE SLENDERMAN, fiction not only surpasses reality but contaminates it in a horrifying way. With a sensibility reminiscent of Emmanuel Carrère, director Irene Taylor Brodsky closely follows ordinary people living through an ordeal the likes of which no one could have imagined. Her approach elegantly avoids drifting towards the spectacular, focusing instead on the human aspect of this tragic incident. Using testimonials and archival footage, it also questions the complex relationship that exists today between youth and social media. If the Slender Man doesn’t exist, he certainly haunts our spirit, as is evidenced by the public fascination with this millennial urban legend. Uniquely powerful, the disturbing BEWARE THE SLENDERMAN evokes IN COLD BLOOD through its courageous attempt to uncover the unknown.

— Simon Laperrière

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