Michelle goes back to college with The Historian.
While the premise of the plot is interesting enough, the slow and meandering way it unfolds absolutely kills the pacing of the film. There are too many side plots, pointless interactions, and filler conversations padding out the runtime—The Historian is overlong at just over two hours running time. Though it’s not a bad thing for a movie to be long, it should have enough interesting content to warrant all of that screen time.
The acting is pretty good for the most part and the best performances come from Doleac and Sadler. All of the side characters are cliché and underwritten—most of them just exist to bring about events and plot points and not as living, breathing people. Doleac wants the audience to take this film seriously, but there is never at any point any gravitas to the proceedings. This is made even worse by the atrociously bad soundtrack choices. Have you ever been in a greeting card store? You know that kind of folky, faux-country, feel-good guitar stuff they play in there? This entire movie has that as the background music. It doesn’t mesh well with any scene and honestly takes away from the movie’s atmosphere that it’s trying to create.
|"You're really boring me right now."|
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As far as debut films go, The Historian falls smack dab in the middle quality-wise. It’s not a completely terrible first attempt, but it’s too unfocused and self-indulgent to be effective. Hopefully, Doleac reigns himself in for his next feature because he does have the ability to craft an interesting story.