Chronicle puts a fresh spin on the found-footage format, By using its premise the film spares the audience from the headache-inducing camera jerking gimmicks and manage to provide some cinematic shots.
The film is lead by three unknown actors which made it grounded. They were all good, but Dane Dehaan stands out as the troubled outsider.
However, when you set aside the tricks of its trade, the Chronicle is a conventional and predictable morality play about power.
You’re given three stock characters – the outcast, the cool kid, and the likable douchebag. You pretty much know who loses control, who dies, and who manages to survive and learn the moral lesson.
Chronicle isn’t also immune to the main pitfall of its own format. Towards the end it ditches the amateur handheld camera and upgrades to a pro, just in time to stage the climax and final act, tearing down the suspension of disbelief.
Nonetheless, Chronicle is an entertaining and fast-paced action film that’s equal parts science-fiction, superhero origin story, and teenage drama with a clever take on the worn-out found-footage format.
Chronicle is a conventional superhero story elevated by great performances and inventive found-footage tricks.