Sunday, June 25, 2017

The Back 80 (New Bigfoot Documentary) - An Editorial

The new feature film THE BACK 80 from Twisted Tree Productions follows Suzanne, whose life was turned upside down when a Bigfoot ran across the road in front of her one summer evening. Just as she is trying to come to terms with what she’s seen the creature arrives at her doorstep and sends her into a downward spiral looking for answers. After calming her fears, a few years later, she heads into a nearby plot of woods called the back 80 to find the truth.

The following editorial is by The Crypto Blast contributor, Rictor Riolo.

I was given an advance copy of THE BACK 80 by Bigfoot eyewitness, Suzanne Ferencak when I met her at The Ohio Bigfoot Conference in May. She was a very kind woman who had quite the story to tell. Fortunately her story is also shared in the form of a gripping documentary.

The documentary by Alan Megargle and Jesse Morgan covers what Suzanne saw and how she contacted Bigfoot investigator Mark Maisel who then followed up on her encounter. The story includes multiple witnesses that back up the activity happening around and on her property.

So what is The Back 80? The Back 80 is an area of land (80 acres) that is leased out to hunters in the fall. Suzanne was used to animals living on her property (18 acres) and less than a mile from The Back 80 until she saw the animal jumping across the road that looked to be a Bigfoot. She never had a clue Bigfoot existed in her state of Ohio.

Suzanne and her brother-in-law were burning wood and he let out a screech which resulted in a similar screech being returned in the direction of her sighting. Her brother-in-law repeated his scream and the creature returned the same frightening scream. Suzanne told me it was enough to shake her out of her camp chair. And in the movie she says it was enough for her to not get off the porch for a month and a half. She didn't know what she was dealing with. Having heard screams like that myself up in Washington state, I can relate to how she felt.

Another time Suzanne was sitting on her porch at night using her laptop when she heard heavy footfalls coming toward her with heavy breathing over her shoulder. She backed into her house and didn't come outside for two solid days. It wasn't fun anymore. She is visibly upset in the documentary about her experiences and wanted to sell her house.

There is a night time investigation by Suzanne and her husband Bernie that's ten times better than the silly night time investigations Finding Bigfoot has given us for the past 5 years.

What I liked and didn't like about the documentary:

I enjoyed listening to the different people share their stories from Jennifer, Marion, Sherry, Bernie, David, Christine to Walter the hunter. The drone footage is stunning and very professional looking along with the time lapse photography. It is all edited wonderfully and the Bigfoot footage used is scary and better than what Small Town Monsters have used in their documentaries. 

The music is perfect for setting the documentary's tone by Brian Wingrove. Music can either make or break a documentary and it takes the show to a new level. There is even a surprise cameo by a Bigfoot community fan favorite. However I have two complaints about the film. 

Complaint #1: The scary sound effect used for transitions is overused and takes you out of the story every time it is used. It got on my nerves real quick. Perhaps it's because the audio level is too loud for the clip? I don't know. 

Complaint #2: And this one is an important one in regards to story telling. Mark Maisel is used heavily in the documentary's beginning but then at the end we don't get to see him and hear his final thoughts on the activity happening in The Back 80. In fact, getting all the eyewitnesses final thoughts on this creature would have been a really nice way to bring it all together. Instead we're given a folk singer playing guitar about Ohio. 

I definitely give this documentary an A- It's so close to being perfect, that there isn't a reason why it couldn't have been. I know how hard it is making videos. And these guys did an amazing job, despite my critical thoughts. 

Now available on DVD, the special edition version of "The Back 80". Includes the special feature "Fathom Frontiers Investigates". Own it today by clicking this link.

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