The Thing I Like About …

Lake Mungo [spoiler alert]: the fact that she’s in all the photos.

In Lake Mungo, a girl seems to be haunting her house. As we learn about the weeks leading up to her death, we discover that she had strange dreams, that she was troubled by an apparently supernatural encounter at a sleep-away camp, that her parents have seen ghosts of her in her bedroom. We also see, by the end of the film, that her parents may have been seeing a recording haunting of things she did before she died, that her dreams may have been prophetic in nature (as well as the supernatural sighting), and that her brother – in his grief, trying to make sense of all of it and comfort his family – has hoaxed pretty much all of his video “evidence”.

And then, at the end, when they’ve gone through the difficult process of grieving and letting go, and the family is leaving the house, we are shown all the photos again … and there she is, off to the side, tucked into the shadows, hanging out next to the hoaxed “her”. It turned out the haunting was real … but not the one that everyone was looking at.

Why do people believe in ghosts? Some say it’s because we want to believe in life after death. Some just use it as a catch-all term for the-weird-stuff-that-happens-that-we-can’t-explain.

Why don’t people believe in ghosts? A lot of them say it’s because they don’t believe in things they can’t explain scientifically, or in things that seem irrational or illogical. Some just don’t want to think about the possibility that scary stuff can exist.

But most of us are stuck in between: we believe in ghosts, and we don’t believe in ghosts. We want to believe in life after death, but we don’t want to believe that scary things can exist. We want to see magic … but we’re afraid to see magic. We put our energy into creating the illusion of magic for others, but never really believe it ourselves … but it’s actually really still there.

The magic is really still there.

It may be right behind you, right now.

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