Let’s start here: Have you ever seen “The Den”? The brilliance of that little-known, criminally underseen screenlife horror gem is fodder for another day on “The Daily Stream,” but it’s crucial to mention because the film’s writer-director, Zachary Donahue, is the unexpected creator of “The Unknowable.” Those of you who have seen “The Den” will probably be taken by surprise by this information because the two pieces of horror media could not be more different. But the unforeseen scope of Donahue’s talent across the board — from the directing to the editing of both projects, and especially the writing of this latest piece — is undeniable with this latest work, a 40-minute found footage tale that is so stylized and specific, it’s nearly impossible to not be captivated by it.
First off, “The Unknowable” is told as an episodic documentary in ten parts that follows the Wilcox family from their relocation to Silent Creek until the end of their lives. Donahue uses modern black and white footage he shot for the project alongside found clips of the era, with repeating imagery being a cornerstone of establishing character, plot, and locations. The piece is narrated by a man (Sean Burgos) who will instantly make the series feel like Wes Anderson’s answer to cosmic horror, but his narrations seep into your psyche and become the perfect guide through the Wilcox’s story. His cadence paired with Donahue’s writing is pitch-perfect for the vintage feel of the series and the general excitement its story brings.