The early scenes of Carter Smith's atmospheric indie horror film "Jamie Marks Is Dead" do a fine job portending something wintry, disturbing and tense. When the body of routinely bullied high school outcast Jamie Marks is found near the banks of a river in upstate New York, chums Gracie (Morgan Saylor), who discovered Jamie, and Adam (
Adam responds to this needy haunting by essentially befriending the ghostly embodiment of the aftermath of unimaginable cruelty. The supernatural connection augurs for Adam a wobbly and eventually dangerous hold on reality.
It's a meaty premise, which Smith (
"Jamie Marks Is Dead" admirably refuses to hew to conventional horror tropes and is acted with integrity by its young performers, but the film nonetheless has a nagging pulse problem.
"Jamie Marks Is Dead."
MPAA rating: None.
Running time: 1 hour, 41 minutes.
Playing: Los Feliz 3, Los Angeles.