Conspiracy theories are a very interesting thing. Their main device is to question the way you think on particular events in history. Usually political questioning of our government. The Conspiracy is about two documentary filmmakers who lose contact in their subject Terrance who is a major conspiracy theorist. While the documentary, as the film presents it as such, seems to be mainly about the subject of conspiracy theories but finds a lot of information is provided by Terrance. After Terrance cannot be contacted, Aaron & Jim go to his house to see what is going on. His apartment is trashed and Aaron & Jim wonder if Terrance was an unstable mind to begin with or if something bigger is the reason for Terrance’s disappearance. Aaron begins to try to piece together what Terrance was working on before his disappearance and comes across what might be a secret society formed of powerful people that have their hands in government and industry.
What director Christopher MacBride does very well with the film is actually make it feel like an documentary. All the theories are presented as being properly researched. Once Terrance disappears, there is a sense of tension and dread that doesn’t leave the screen until the final frame. Actors Aaron Poole and James Gilbert, who also go by their real names, have a believable camaraderie between the two of them that is so important since the film is supposed to feel like a real documentary. It is very easy to get lost in the conspiracy theories addressed in the film as well as really care about how far these filmmakers will carry this investigation.
By the time you get to the final 15 minutes of the film, it will either lose you on where the film wants to go or you will be along for the ride. And while then end might be a bit predictable as well as let some people down, there is no doubting the fact that the previous hour prior to the finale is one of the most well structured faux-documentary films I have ever seen. Director Christopher MacBride definitely displays a skill level and an attention to detail with the film that is not often seen with beginning filmmakers. The best thing you can know is that the film is not an actual documentary but a work of fiction.
The Conspiracy will make you think and will also place a terrifying feeling in the pit of your stomach that will stay there past the screening. You will immediately want to watch it again after its viewing. This one is highly recommended and still stands as my favorite of Fantastic Fest.