‘Evil’ keeps audience guessing


Beatriz Hernandez

Ross Turner and Masiela Lusha with Anthony Ferrante in between takes of “Forgotten Evil” filmed at Los Medanos College August 25, 2016

With its spine-chilling thrills and eerie tone, “Sharknado” director and Los Medanos College alumnus Anthony Ferrante’s latest film “Forgotten Evil” premiered on the Lifetime Movie Network Sunday, March 12, leaving audiences on the edge of their seats.

As someone primarily known for being a part of a huge cultural phenomenon, such as “Sharknado,” it would be easy to label Ferrante as just the satirist who brought the silly concept of shark-infested tornados to life. “Forgotten Evil” shows Ferrante’s versatility as a director and storyteller.

The film begins when amnesiac Renée (Masiela Lusha) awakens to find herself recovering from a coma with only faint memories of being attacked by a mysterious figure prior to her hospitalization.

In typical LMN fashion, the movie had dramatic twists and turns at every moment, but the writing and unique story keeps it from being just another Lifetime movie with an inane plotline.

After a meeting with her doctors, she’s introduced her unemotional therapist Dr. Evan Michaels (Jeff Marchelleta) and is discharged from the hospital, strangely left under the care of her nurse and new friend Mariah (Angie Teodora Dick), who is suspiciously eager to care for her.

Following this she meets love interest Randy “Deus Ex” Dumas (Kyle McKeever), who always seems to show up at exactly the right moment.

Ferrante wrote and filmed the movie in such a way where you’re not immediately able to figure out who is responsible for Renée’s assault — everyone’s a suspect.

I was thoroughly surprised by the film’s substance and creativity. If not reminded by the commercial breaks, this movie felt as though it could have aired on any network.

One of the most interesting facts about the movie is its filming location. Ferrante, an Antioch High School and LMC alumnus, chose to shoot the film at both schools and in the surrounding areas back in August.

Watching the parts shot on campus, Lusha’s facial expressions seem over dramatic at first, but comparing my reaction to viewing the scene on screen to when I had the opportunity to see it being filmed in person was like the seeing difference between theatre and film in real life.

Seeing Lusha act as Renée from the behind the scenes, I was able to hear and feel the emotion in her voice, but when watching, a lot more of the emotion relied on me seeing her facial expressions.

When Ferrante was working on set, he made sure to film numerous takes of a scene so he had the opportunity to pick and choose how he wanted to depict certain characters in editing. Although I was essentially watching the same thing I had seen filmed back in August, the way it was put together made it feel like I was seeing it for the first time.

It was enjoyable seeing how the experience shaped my perception of the final product. Although “Sharknado 5” has already been announced, here’s to hoping Ferrante has many more opportunities in the future to showcase his artistic abilities beyond shark-driven natural disasters.