When Mike gets an email containing video clips of his drug addicted former school friend Chris, with a map to the secluded cabin he's living in, he goes to find him. His plan is to get him clean, but when Chris refuses to go to rehab, Mike chains him to a water pipe, intending to keep him there for seven days and forcing him to go cold turkey.
The film is a very slow burn. Very. Very. Slow. For the first 1 hour 15 minutes I sometimes found it hard to stick with it. The acting (particularly from the two lead actors) is decent, though some of the dialogue feels improvised, and is sometimes rambling and a bit over-long.
However, Resolution is not really horror. It isn't frightening - though it's occasionally a little creepy - and is mostly weird and mysterious. Bizarre Lynchian characters pop up, then disappear again. Clues come in a variety of unusual formats (online video clips, photographs, VHS cassettes, 35mm slides, vinyl records, movie film) and appear in surprising places. Mike always refers to these clues as 'stories', a word which sounds awkward at first, but turns out to be an important theme through the film.
Resolution is a "horror" movie set in a cabin in the woods, but it doesn't play by the usual rules. The director uses film-making techniques to break the fourth wall and challenge the audience. So if you don't like the film's approach, does that say more about your expectations as a viewer, than the movie's failings? It's all very meta, and Film Studies students are going to have a field day analysing this.
It's either a knowing masterpiece and a new twist on the horror genre, or somebody just threw a lot of weirdness, meaningless puzzles and unanswered loose ends at the camera and left the audience to work it out for themselves. There's a thin line between cinematic genius and Emperor's New Clothes, and this is certainly a love-it-or-loathe-it movie. But it does leave you thinking long after the closing credits, which isn't a bad thing at all. As for me, I'm glad I watched it, but I have to admit I found discussing it afterwards far more interesting than the film itself. 3/5
* WARNING: This trailer contains spoilers as well as most of the film's highlights.