If ever there was an example of a film that should have never been made, this is it. The advantage of a video presentation of a subject is its ability to attract viewer interest through the use of both image and sound. Instead, the creators of this video have managed to deliver an hour of excruciating mental flack, which was both a challenge to endure and a temptation to stop the video presentation.
The presentation begins deceptively with an exciting soundtrack and gothic images that are commonly found the horror genre. Unfortunately, this wonderful first impression becomes a false hope that leads to greater disappointment. Shortly after the introduction to the film series, the video launches into maritime footage and then deteriorates into highly narcoleptic repetitive sequences.
These sequences included the scrolling of faux vintage manuscript texts, silent film re-enactment of early settlers kneeling to pray, nature walks by the experts featured in the film, portraits of early American and British icons, tedious panning over skeletal and artifact finds. This technique of image repetition forcibly reminds viewers of what a communist indoctrination video would employ.
Re-enactments of settlers unloading cargo from ships, early settler real estate, firewood gathering, slow wandering around the shoreline and writhing terminally ill settlers also did nothing to ignite the remotest interest in the film. These depictions are better left confined to the minds of film makers as they only serve to enhance viewership decline.
Also, scenes and narrations of archeological techniques such as gentle scraping of the earth, the inadvertent laboratory tour, footage of the expert browsing through a book and his departure from a building seem to illustrate the dearth of creativity involved in this production. The excitement level and pace of the film was as kinetic as the skeletal remains they were conducting research on.
Despite the melatonin inducing qualities of the video mentioned, there is a fleeting moment of suspense where the possibility of a plot to poison the settlers is raised. This faint glimmer of hope for the film is quickly blanketed by the film's inability to depart from its inherent snail's pace. It does not help that the expert testimony and opinion provided in the film is delivered by old men in beards, reminiscent of grandfathers lulling their grandchildren to sleep with a bedtime story.
In conclusion, it is perhaps the content and direction of the film that defined the movie's fate from the start as it is a monumental challenge to breathe life into a story about the demise of an early settlement town's population.