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The Upper Footage (2013) – Review

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What happened to Jackie Spearo?

The Upper Footage unfolds this mystery through found footage with a firsthand account of her death and the cover-up that quickly ensued. Illuminating the misadventures of a group of young socialites, Upper takes us behind the curtain and flaunts the carelessness of New York’s finest.

Out for a night of fun, we follow four affluent friends hell-bent on having a good time. Bar hopping in a private limo (because that’s what we all do) the groups intemperance increases with each passing hour. Looking to continue this state of recklessness a quick call to one of many drug dealers they know lines them up with a little cocaine. Scratch that – Lots of cocaine. Let’s get this party started!

The Upper FootageThe one thing that went entirely wrong was bringing Jackie Spearo into the mix. Her only mistake, trusting that the people she had just met would not only show her a good time, but protect her as well. Jackie overdosed on cocaine at a house party hosted by people she didn’t know. Having no interest in actually knowing her when she was alive made it that much easier to dispose of her once she was dead. And we thought the dark underbelly of New York was found in alleyways and under overpasses.

High society is expensive and when mistakes are made they can be very costly, especially when you have everything to lose. The Upper Footage is a deconstruction of wealth and the privileges that come along with it. Showing us how easy it is for things to go askew. How even the highest on the totem pole can disintegrate into madness when faced with a choice; to throw the very lives away they’ve worked little to achieve or to wipe the slate clean and start the next day anew, as if nothing ever happened. The decision they make is unsuccessful, turning out more deadly than anyone could have anticipated. I was shocked to see how fractured friendships can become when something so horrific is experienced as a group. The Upper Footage is not only about telling Jackie Spearo’s story but also about the upper class mentality. I can appreciate a movie that presents such a real life depiction of the social tiers in our society. Upper delivers just that.

I think I’ve witnessed an actual murder. Yes, a murder. With media today it is difficult at times to separate fact from fiction. The director of The Upper Footage, Justin Cole, took two years creating a living experiment, using the speed and popularity of social media, as the back story to help develop this film. Perfection takes time which is why I think Justin hit the nail on the head with this one. The media surrounding it is real, is the footage itself?

By now, you’ve probably already perused the interweb in search of that answer. It is there, and it comes directly from Justin. I’d suggest that if you have any interest in seeing this movie that you wait to find those answers; those that once seeing The Upper Footage you’ll be dying to know. For me, it doesn’t actually matter whether it occurred or not. Sure the death of a young innocent girl matters, but whether or not there is any truth behind the film is not what concerns me. You may not find it easy to watch. If you aren’t a fan of dialogue I’d steer clear. If you enjoy the rough, mostly uncut feel of found footage films, it’s right up your alley.

Overall Rating: 7 out of 10

Check out these stills of The Upper Footage from the director himself!

Did you know that you can view The Upper Footage for just $5 on their website?

Viewer Discretion Advised: Movie contains drug use, strong language, and violence.

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