The Nameless Days (2022) Should Remain Nameless
Title: The Nameless Days
First Non-Festival Release: April 1, 2022 (Digital/Streaming Platforms)
Director: Andrew Mecham, Matthew Whedon
Writer: Andrew Mecham, Matthew Whedon
Runtime: 92 Minutes
Starring: Ally Ioannides, Charles Halford, Alejandro Akara
Where to Watch: Check out where to find it here
According to ancient Aztec culture, every twenty years for a few days there is a period of time where Gods come back down to Earth to pillage human souls from the living. During one such period, Nicole (Ally Ioannides) is arguing with her father Charlie (Charles Halford) about accepting an opportunity for an athletic scholarship in California. He cannot bear the idea of her moving away from their sleepy border town, but he relents in a drunken indignation. While they argue, Rahui (Alejandro Akara) and his sister Gabriela (Ashley Marian Ramos) attempt to cross the U.S./Mexico border and are stopped by a terrifying spirit.
Interesting ideas lose focus as the tedium ensues in listless supernatural horror The Nameless Days.
Taking place over the course of several days and nights, the story of The Nameless Days develops in a strange way to juggle all the elements that piece it together. In quite possibly the weirdest setup ever, the main character’s home quite literally sits on the U.S./Mexico border, and has a history of undocumented immigrants being smuggled through the area. Before anything supernatural comes into play, the story is already farfetched despite its technical possibility. When Nicole stumbles upon Rahui, days are already passing despite him sustaining a serious wound to the side, one that eviscerated several others in the area. The narrative stretches over days, and the only continuity that remains is Rahui’s slight limp. This is all before it gets decidedly paranormal.
Moving forward, the supernatural entity that haunts this stretch of land specifically once every twenty years seeking out children to sacrifice. While this sounds cool on paper, the execution within the narrative makes little sense. How have the stories not reached the locals who have clearly lived there for decades? Why does this spirit go after so many that do not have any relation to children? These questions and more make it difficult to take the clunky story seriously and make for an exceedingly ludicrous setup.
Gripes about the overall story execution aside, there are too many things that do not add up in this indie film. Beyond the typical horror fare of wounds magically killing characters instantly while merely irritating others, and wavering displays of grief despite what the audience is otherwise knows about given characters and their relationships, so many aspects of the plot fall apart with minor scrutiny. Certain characters just disappear from the narrative with no explanation or follow up. What’s the most confusing though concerns the ending. The final reveal makes no sense in the context of a supernatural entity that can sense when babies are around as evident by multiple times within the film it locating the baby easily. Movie magic can only go so far.
The cast lacks polish and much of the film drags because of their energy, or lack thereof. There are so many moments within The Nameless Days where the material, grounded or paranormal, requires much more passionate responses than what most of the main cast gives. It’s possible they are going for a more subtle approach to horror, but it doesn’t work when their static delivery hinders a moment awash in the potential for emotion.
Despite the overall tepid approach to horror, there is quite a few things that The Nameless Days does right. Occasionally, the cinematography is quite nice. Several shots of the fog drenched desert elicit feelings of mystery and fear. Despite its execution, the lore is quite interesting. There are many disturbing aspects of the demon in question and it’s a shame that it doesn’t hit the way it needs to in The Nameless Days. Much credit should be given to actress Ambyr Mishelle for fully committing to the Coaxoch demon. Her physicality despite the tedium in shots is welcome in an otherwise static film.
Dull and plodding, The Nameless Days is a feeble attempt at wringing out some supernatural horror with distinct lore in a unique location. Despite the ingredients of a truly intriguing story, The Nameless Days focus on the petty and unrelated melodrama of an American family sours the mood. Rough acting, bizarre writing decisions, and eye-rolling reveals make this indie film difficult to recommend. For those wanting something digestible and somewhat unique in premise, may find something worth sacrificing for in The Nameless Days, otherwise it’s fine to wander elsewhere.
Overall Score? 4/10