The Hoard (2018)
Directors (and co-writers): Jesse Thomas Cook & Matt Wiele
Cast: Lisa Solberg, Tony Burgess, Barry More, Ry Barrett, Elma Begovic, Marcus Ludlow, Justin Darmanin, Charles Ivey, Jesse Thomas Cook
THE HOARD is a comedy/horror mockumentary that chronicles the unravelling of a production team who are attempting to produce the ultimate reality TV show pilot ‘Extremely Haunted Hoarders’. – IMDB
Mockumentaries are a tough subgenre to crack. They have to carry a certain comedic value to them as they go and mock a certain style. In this case, The Hoard tackles mocking reality TV in the likes of ghost hunting combined with house flipping shows. The movie is a comedy for the most part but takes a turn for something more in the horror area near the end as the plot takes a sudden turn. The main hurdle for The Hoard is honestly on how much its viewers enjoy mockumentaries in general. It embraces what it is trying to achieve fully both with its ragtag team of “experts” with each of their specialities and the way the entire movie is executed.
Looking at the characters, they are the heart of The Hoard. The most comedic being that of the pompous Dr. Ebe (Tony Burgess) who takes his role as the resident psychiatrist to solve this hoarding habit of their subject to another level with both impractical and ridiculous ways. Another highlight is the divorced paranormal experts Chloe (Emma Begovic) and Caleb Black (Ry Barrett) who have their incredibly hilarious interpretation of ghost hunters both making fun of the scenario in an indirect way in an over the top manner that offers lots of entertainment and plenty of laughs. It is quite a treat to see Emma Begovic switch from the really intense main role in Bite to this comedic role which shows her acting chops. The professional organizer, Sheila Smyth (Lisa Solberg) is the leader of the team and while she is simply the glue and grounded person here and the one who goes through a lot more situations and dramatic moments, she somehow doesn’t have quite as much impact as the previously mentioned ones. Same goes for the construction/renovation trio, Duke (Marcus Ludlow), Falcon (Justin Darmanin) and their temp worker Ivey (Charles Ivey). They do cover a bit of the over the top dumb humor which lands less because it sometimes overstays its welcome.
Humor is a subjective thing. It is what makes the mockumentary comedy genre sometimes hard to talk about. What works for me might not tickle your funny bone. In this case, the humor lands enough for this film to work and as a mockumentary, it is done in an entertaining way with enough to keep it intriguing. However, it does feel slightly disjointed at times and some other bits felt not so necessary. It’s a short run time and sometimes it feels like it circles too long in a lot of the same movements before switching the plot up. There are some good and some lacking elements here especially in terms of the horror coming a little too late. For those who do appreciate mockumentaries, this one is worth a shot.
Side note: I can appreciate what it does here but I’m not the audience for this one so I can see that it does a good job but I didn’t quite get as involved as other who enjoy mockumentaries would.