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The Movie Like Megan Is Missing That Found Footage Fans Need To See

Among the various film genres, few boast as wide a range as horror does, where movies can become classics for a variety of reasons, where one franchise can yield both a high point and a low point of the genre, and where a wide variety of sub-genres have emerged over the decades. Thus, horror fans often find movies they enjoy that are dismissed by others — and in the process of exploring, find similar films that pique their interest.

The 2011 horror movie "Megan Is Missing" is no exception in this regard, as the film has found an ever-growing audience in the decade since its release. It tells the tale of a popular 14-year-old girl named Megan (Rachel Quinn) who mysteriously disappears after meeting up with an online acquaintance named Josh. This worries her best friend Amy (Amber Perkins), who also vanishes while searching for Megan.

The movie fits squarely in the found footage horror sub-genre, which first gained prominence in 1999 with the classic "The Blair Witch Project." "Megan Is Missing" recently saw a resurgence in its popularity when horror fans on TikTok began sharing their opinions of the film in 2020, causing other horror aficionados to seek it out in the process. Another movie from 2016, however, shares many of the strengths of "Megan Is Missing" and is thus a must-see for the latter's fans, both old and new.

Ratter, from 2016, is a found footage horror film with Ashley Benson

2016 saw the release of writer-director Branden Kramer's feature film debut "Ratter." Adapted from his 2012 short film "Webcam," "Ratter" focuses on a grad student named Emma Taylor, played by Ashley Benson, who's just moved to New York City. It soon becomes apparent that Emma has caught the eye of a stalker who uses her devices first to spy on her, then actively affect her life by doing things such as deleting voicemails and sending untraceable messages that sabotage her relationships with potential suitors, his growing obsession becoming apparent. As his actions get bolder, Emma's mental health begins to deteriorate due to the helplessness of her situation.

Like "Megan Is Missing," "Ratter" is a found footage film that tells the story entirely through cameras that Emma owns. It uses multiple cameras, as the stalker begins watching Emma with the camera in her phone before progressing to her laptop webcam and her game console camera, with the movie switching between these three and sometimes using multiple cameras to show different angles of the same event. 

The two movies also share similarities in terms of their protagonist, though Emma Taylor, at 23, is older than either of the two girls at the center of "Megan Is Missing." She is, however, a young woman who frequently uses her phone and laptop to make and maintain connections with friends and family, and doesn't have much of a social circle due to her recent move to the city. In addition, the antagonist of "Ratter" is rarely seen on camera throughout the movie, making his presence felt by his actions instead.

The two movies share more than superficial similarities

Most importantly, however, both movies have the same feeling of dread. Just like with "Megan Is Missing," audiences watching "Ratter" can't help but feel like the story will end in tragedy, as Emma's efforts to thwart her stalker increasingly continue to fail. The inescapable doom that seems to hang over Emma's head through no fault of her own gives the movie a very effective atmosphere that is sure to appeal to fans of "Megan Is Missing." In addition, Emma's increasingly desperate search for answers on who is doing this to her and why — and how to escape this person — is very reminiscent of Amy's frantic search for answers on what happened to Megan and who is behind her disappearance.

Benson's excellent performance is another major strength of the movie, which is currently available to rent on YouTube, Google Play, Amazon, Fandango Now, Microsoft, and DirecTV. Branden Kramer is currently not officially attached to any new project, but if this movie is any indication, he's sure to make an impact when he returns to feature film directing. In the meantime, horror fans will continue to have found footage movies to look forward to.