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“Butterfly Kisses” is a gripping homage to the mother of all found footage films, “The Blair Witch Project” (1999).

Butterfly Kisses

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What would you do for success? Would you create an elaborate hoax or put yourself in harm’s way?

Written and Directed by Erik Kristopher Myers, the found footage film Butterfly Kisses explores these questions as we follow aspiring filmmaker Gavin York (Seth Adam Kallick) down a rabbit hole as he investigates an urban legend, Peeping Tom.

York moves into a house with his wife, Amelia York (Eileen del Valle), son Carter (Kaleo Okouchi), and in-laws Eve and Bart Hunkeler (Janise Whelan, Michael Whelen).

After he finds a box of tapes containing raw footage from an unfinished documentary about a local urban legend, “Peeping Tom,” York decides to explore the origins of these tapes.

The original documentarians, film students Sophia Crane (Rachel Armiger) and Feldman (Reed DeLisle), have mysteriously disappeared. Gavin hits a dead end anytime he tries to locate any of the people interviewed for Crane and Feldman’s documentary.

Much like the Blair Witch (The Blair Witch Project), Peeping Tom is a Maryland-based urban legend, a supernatural entity summoned by staring down the Illchest Tunnel without blinking for an hour–between midnight and 1 a.m. Once this is done, every time the summoner blinks, Peeping Tom gets closer and eventually kills them.

York puts Crane and Feldman’s footage together into a complete documentary; meanwhile, he has a crew documenting his progress with it.

Myers’s film is an intriguing take on found footage films.

Butterfly Kisses

I loved that Blair Witch’s co-creator, Eduardo Sanchez, appeared in the film as himself.

Butterfly Kisses is a multilayered film with a lot of twists and turns. York is a struggling filmmaker with financial problems. Is he perpetuating a hoax to make money? Did York film the Crane and Feldman documentary? Is the documentary real, and does Peeping Tom exist? Or is the documentary real and Crane and Feldman the hoaxers?

The cast’s performances are flawless and produce a convincing mockumentary.

The film doesn’t resort to a lot of gore, and many of the film’s actions and attacks occur off-camera. However, it works, creating that ambiguity that makes this such a compelling watch and will keep you guessing as to what’s real and what’s not.

I should warn you that it’s more of a suspenseful psychological thriller than a genuinely creepy or frightful horror film. As far as scares, there are a few disturbing scenes with some gore, but not many, and not until later in the film. However, when it decides to get disturbing, it certainly succeeds.

Ultimately, Butterfly Kisses is entertaining, intriguing, and engaging — and an easy recommendation for fans of found footage.

Overall Rating (Out of 5 Butterflies): 4

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