Friday, 8 June 2012

The Pact - Movie Review



Who's in it?

Caity LotzCasper Van Dien and Agnes Bruckner 

What's it About?

Following her mother's death a young woman reluctantly returns to her childhood home at the behest of your troubled sister. On her arrival, however, she finds her sister missing and a sinister presence has taken over their home. 

Any Good?

The Pact, originally released as a short by Nicholas McCarthy to the Sundance Film Festival, and made into a feature once funding was secured on the back of those reviews and accolades, is a mixed bag of horror/thriller and cliché. I'm eager to see the original short, to be honest, so would really appreciate a heads up if it can be found. My spidey senses tell me that in it, we'll be spared the plot holes and drawn out moments of the feature film. 




Presactly what I'd be doing in her position (Before running screaming from the doras)
Even though there are sequences and scares that we've seen ad infinitum in horror films (a ouija board? Seriously?), there is a lingering sense of dread brought to the screen by Caity Lotz that had me gripped while watching The Pact. I found the feel of the movie dated though, had it not been for iPhones, laptops, a terrifying Skype scenario and weirdo Google Maps on the fritz, you'd be forgiven for believing this movie was set in the nineties. The script is minimal and not a lot of effort has gone into character development but the basic plot is so simple and plays out so steadily that it gave me the willies.

The camera work in the claustrophobic house was excellently crafted, close up shots and tight following of the characters meant that we truly got a feel for this creep shack so when the 'secret room' was revealed the audience were just as shocked as our protagonist. (It's not a spoiler if it's in the trailers y'know)


We ALL have that one old school friend that gives us the heebie jeebies, right?
Casper Van Dien, to me, was just too rugged to play the part of the concerned detective, he delivered his gruff lines with gusto but his chiselled smig was just too much for me to reconcile with small town twee. Hayley Hudson as Stevie (pictured) genuinely gave me the creeps, she has a sixth sense so is brought in (kicking and screaming) to communicate with the other side. It is during her scenes that we see some of the slick camera work that sets The Pact apart.  

All in all, I enjoyed this movie, I only watched some of it like this  and the rest through my fingers. The basic concept is clever and the shocks, when they come, are well executed. The final moments of the movie did confuse me somewhat though and instead of making me want to see a follow up, they've given me an urge to hunt down the original. 

If simplicity and scarediness are your thing The Pact is definitely one you're going to want to catch. 

Rating:  
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