H.P. Lovecraft wrote of ancient entities that lived under water, waiting for their chance to reclaim Earth. They were everywhere, from the middle of the Pacific Ocean to the New England coast. But he never thought to put one in an apartment complex swimming pool. The makers of Drowning Echo have rectified that oversight.
Previously titled Nereus and The Complex and now finding release under the title Drowning Echo this is the directorial debut of Georges Padey who co-wrote the script with Itziar Martinez who also stars in the film. The result has potential but gets dragged down by its flaws.
Sara (Itziar Martinez) needs a break since the death of her mother, (dead parents seem to be a running theme in this film actuall), Will (Sean Ormond) invites her down for a visit just as his wife Lindsay (Natalie Blackman) is heading to Greece on business. However her stay is anything but restfull as her first night there she repeatedly finds herself mysteriously transported to the pool’s deep end.
One of the other residents, Alex (Raul Walder), informs her a girl went missing here some months ago. We saw her fate in the prologue and apparently he did too, but who would believe him? Sara wisely bails out to a nearby hotel. Not so wisely she decides to get to the bottom of these events and soon finds she’s in over her head.
Drowning Echo has some neat twists and a couple of original ideas, but there’s not enough here to justify the 105 minute running time. This needed to be 90 minutes at the max, it drags badly in spots. There’s also a problem with the dialogue. Both Padey and Martinez are from South America, and it’s likely that English isn’t their first language. Which may explain why the dialogue frequently sounds like it was written in Spanish and run through Google Translate. They really needed to have a native speaker of American English give it a going over because its bad to the point of pulling me out of the film more than once.
To be fair there is some decent CGI and the last act works up some chills but it’s not enough. Drowning Echo has way to many stagnant scenes during its overlong running time.
Drowning Echo will be available on VOD and DVD April 4 from High Octane Pictures.