Editors Note: “Price is Right” is a running column from local film enthusiast Mr. Price. He reviews selected Strasburg Film Festival films. If he posts a negative review, then the Shenandoah Film Collaborative will respond within his reviews as to why we selected the certain film. By going about it this way, we can help ensure the reader that these are honest film reviews.
“The God Inside My Ear” is a slow-burning psychological horror that has the audience and characters alike questioning reality from the moment the film begins. Following Elizia after an unexpected breakup, the film brings us into her world of detachment and fragile sanity as more and more bizarre occurrences come in the wake of Elizia’s world being shattered.
“The God Inside My Ear” is an excellent example of the use of editing to convey a feeling. In this case the disjointed cuts interspersed with snippets of seemingly-unrelated images helps to establish the frayed, nervous energy of both Elizia and the film itself. Moments where Elizia is framed in the center of a mostly colorless set, such as her job at a perfume counter, reinforce her feelings of isolation and detachment. Other times, Elizia is removed from the audience’s attention even in a scene where she is alone, such as the second phone call with the mysterious Telemarketer when the camera slowly pans in to show only the phone. An abundance of these small directorial and editorial choices serve to strongly establish a frantic, confused tone in which the film thrives. The success of this approach is also due in no small part to the performance of Linnea Gregg as Elizia. In a film which so often features the protagonist alone, even in the company of others, while struggling with both personal tragedy and a slipping sense of reality, Gregg has a challenging role to play. And she does so with aplomb, showcasing Elizia’s pain in every single scene.
In a film that opens with a character raving about lizard people and aliens watching him, the deeply human moments manage to interweave perfectly with the conspiratorial mania. “The God Inside My Ear” catches you in its frantic grip and refuses to let go in an engaging, if not always comfortable, ride from beginning to end.