Mickey Keating is no stranger to the SXSW Film Festival nor to many genre fans. He returns to the festival circuit this year with his latest feature, Offseason.
Synopsis: After receiving a mysterious letter, a woman travels to a desolate island town and soon becomes trapped in a nightmare.
In Offseason, Keating “wanted to invoke the dreamy feelings of old southern gothic literature, and the uncanniness of traveling through decayed and rotting places that used to be teeming with life. I wanted to make a nightmare journey into the unknown, about loss and family secrets, and about making a deal with the devil.”
The film opens with a fairytale-like vibe. The music and visuals set us up for the journey that is to come.
We meet Marie (Jocelin Donahue) traveling with her partner George (Joe Swanberg) back to the ominous tourist destination island where her mother grew up, to sort out what or who has desecrated her mother’s grave. Once they reach their destination, things get odd and eerie. There is something ‘not right’ about this place. Soon enough fog and night set in, George and Marie get separated, and the sense of an evil energy or presence sets in.
Some good work in terms of cinematography by Mac Fisken, whose camera work will pull you into this foggy town and all its eeriness. Also a nod to Donahue as a strong lead taking us around the island to unravel its dark secret.
I had the opportunity to speak with Keating about this film in time of its SXSW premiere. Here is what he shared with me about Offseason.