(We're reposting our SXSW review of The Lost Coast to coincide with the film's release via Amazon VOD)

By: Eric D. Snider

As Jasper, the narrator and protagonist of The Lost Coast, begins to describe the events of Halloween night, he says, "We found a dead body -- but more on that later." You know it's an eventful night when discovering a corpse isn't even the lead story.

In this moody, occasionally dreamlike drama, it's not what happens to Jasper and his friends that's important, so much as what happens within Jasper's soul. Yes, most of the drama here is internal, and while writer/director Gabriel Fleming falls prey to some of the missteps typical of new filmmakers, he gets a lot right, too, with a lot of emotional insight.

The film is constructed around an e-mail that twentysomething Jasper (Ian Scott McGregor) is writing to his fiancee overseas, in which he explains what happened the previous night. We gather from his tone that the events were of some importance, and the fact that it was Halloween in San Francisco -- one of the most raucous nights in a raucous city -- suggests there may have been shenanigans (if you know what I mean).