Back on Episode 64, I had Seth Breedlove on to talk about the documentary he was working on, Minerva Monster. If you haven’t already, you should check out that show. It was a lot of fun and gives a great background to the events Seth’s film chronicles.
In short, it’s about a family and some other people who lived near them who, over the course of several years, experienced and saw things many people associate with bigfoot behavior. The movie is mostly about those experiences but it’s also about Minerva and the impact the resulting media attention had on the town itself.
I’ll say right up front here that I have a huge man crush on Seth. I’m a big fan of his podcast SasWhat and just really dig his whole vibe. But, that’s not to say I’ll sit here and say nice things about his movie just because. But I will say nice things about his movie.
On the BFS, we often complained about the lack of “serious” work being done on the subject of wood apes for the screen. Most of the time, these productions are driven by the personality of those on the show rather than the subject matter. In perhaps a demonstration of his own frustrations in that regard, Minerva Monster is totally without any outside personality. All you see on the screen, the only words you hear, are those who experienced the events being retold. That’s a bold move and sets the production apart from its peers in a way that is somewhat refreshing. It can also be limiting in that the entire story and its continuity must be said by those who lived it in a way that allows the viewer to follow along. This does not always happen in Minerva Monster, but I rarely found myself sitting there wondering who the person was talking or why they were on the screen. It works more than it doesn’t.
The copy I saw was not entirely finished, but it was done enough for me to see that it also sets itself apart from contemporary bigfoot work in that it has zero spooky music or anyone in a hairy costume “Boboing” a sighting recreation for the camera. The production values are not as slick as you’d find on cable TV and it never sets up a bullshit cliffhanger before the commercial break because there is no commercial break. It also doesn’t attempt to answer the question of what those involved experienced. There’s no “believer” offset by any “skeptic” debating and rolling their eyes at each other. The movie seems to say, “Here’s what they say happened, decide for yourself.” Refreshing.
I wholeheartedly recommend Minerva Monster to anyone interested in the bigfoot phenomenon. It’s a lovely little labor of love crafted by people wholly interested in telling a story they find fascinating. I enjoyed it quite a bit.
Minerva Monster is available for pre-order and ships in June 2015. It premieres this Saturday at Salt Fork State Park as part of the Ohio Bigfoot Conference.