Alice Oscura – Featured Writer
Warning – Spoilers Ahead
This movie has got all the right ingredients for a great occult horror classic. But an uneven story and faulty plot development has reduced it to just a confusing tale with captivating and sometimes gory visuals.
It is particularly reminiscent of 2004’s The Village (M. Night Shyamalan) where it shows you a community with Irish Protestant roots basically untouched by time and looking like something straight out of the late 1800s. However, to our disappointment it actually takes place in 1973. Honestly, it could have just been a period piece and it would have added to the spook factor of the story. Not to mention the fact that the dialogue is way too refined and modern for that type of community. But I am getting ahead of myself here.
The story follows the coming-of-age of teenager Audrey Earnshaw (Jessica Reynolds). Her mother Agatha (Catherine Walker) has hidden her existence from the rest of the town folk. Agatha has already been accused of witchcraft practices due to the fact that ever since the last lunar eclipse, seventeen years ago, pestilence has befallen the rest of the village while her land has continued to flourish. The atmosphere darkens further when Audrey’s identity is no longer a secret and her origins come into question.
Reynolds is literally picture perfect for the role of Audrey. She reminded me of a young Elizabeth Taylor…picture her around the age that she did International Velvet (1944). The actress has a magnificent otherworldly look about her which definitely ties into her role especially when her true origins are somewhat revealed. Audrey basically infects the community and uses her mesmerizing beauty to trigger a chain of events from which there was no return. The film trudges forward onto heavily occult bearings and atmosphere much similar to that of 2015’s The Witch. I believe that the movie is a metaphor for how easily man can be corrupted and manipulated by beauty. There is a great sense of feminine power and strength emanating from plot especially when you are dealing with a hidden coven of witches.
It is very captivating, and the viewer will never be bored at any time during the film. The story manages to deliver a tense atmosphere and a unique take to not only a coming of age story but, the fact that all that glitters isn’t necessarily gold. However, it falls short of expanding on everything around it. There is no real resolution or closure to the story unfortunately for us, and there is one particular element that appears onscreen that kind of negates the power of the entire script in my opinion and it was big letdown.
Alice’s Score: 5 out of 10
Dark Alice has an old soul and a curious mind. I believe that anyone can be a hero and that the good guys should always win! I dislike cruelty to animals and think that they have far superior qualities to humans. My motto is there is no future without the past. I also have a weird penchant for Paranormal TV shows even though the slightest sound makes me jump.
I enjoy writing reviews and throwing in fun facts to pique the readers’ curiosity. My ultimate goal in life would be to become a published writer one day. You can find me as Dark Alice Reviews on Facebook, my Instagram is alice_oscura and my Twitter handle is @lise_veliz2. For more on me you can click here.