TheLittle: "You’re smart, skilled… but can you solve it?! Solver is a new mystery-adventure film drawn from the world of puzzles, treasure hunts, and escape rooms. Filmed on location in Rochester and upstate New York, it’s been described as “an Indiana Jones junior” and “the most intriguing ‘puzzle movie’ to come along in years.”
While the film’s content is all-ages, the world of Solver isn’t for everyone, cautions writer-producer Jack Kelley. “Our fans tell us they’re disappointed with formulaic Hollywood filler. They’re intelligent, hungry for an experience that’s challenging and meaningful. They love exploring this world we created, and appreciate the craft, detail, and thoughtfulness that went into it.”
Solver tells the story of Luke, a young professional whose grandfather disappears under strange circumstances. Arriving at his grandfather's remote cabin in upstate New York, he discovers a series of clues and puzzles, each more baffling than the last. With the help of a woman from his past and an eccentric sidekick, he must unravel the puzzle before someone else gets to the dark secret it hides.
“Escape room fans really find themselves at home here,” says lead actor John Ruby. “You learn to appreciate puzzles, where they came from, who made them. Each has a story, a unique mind behind it. There’s a certain romance and excitement in that.” Solver is more than just puzzles however. “Our audience is seeking more than cool gizmos, and we aim to deliver a real human story.”
Top to bottom, Solver was crafted differently than your typical Hollywood fare. The team shunned CGI in favor of old school filmmaking techniques: hand crafted props, clever camera skills, real materials – puzzles and machines that actually work. Solver wasn’t shot on the back lot at some studio, it was made in real places, with real history. “We’re returning an authenticity and art to the moviemaking process,” Kelley notes, “It can be difficult to do things this way, but it’s what we believe.”
“Technology isn’t something to be avoided, but it’s meant to enhance the human experience, not replace it.” To that end, the film’s website and Instagram (@solverfilm) feature an interactive “prequel” game called the Solver Puzzle Hunt, with unique puzzles by Breakout Games, the largest escape room company in the US, and Geocaching, the world's largest treasure hunting game, among others."