Archive for horror

‘Clown’: This ain’t no kiddie show

Posted in horror, Movies, suspense with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 4, 2017 by aliciamovie

clown

Reviewed by Alicia Glass

Director: Jon Watts

Studio: Cross Creek Pictures

MPAA Rating: R

Review Rating: 7 out of 10

A harried father, wanting to make his sons birthday not clown-less, dons an old clown costume he found in a house he’s renting and soon discovers to his horror, he can’t take the cursed thing off!

One would think, from that oversimplified version of the plot I just spouted, that the movie is just going to be a gore-fest of body-Horror-turned-hack-n-slash, which is fairly standard for Eli Roth’s MO. However, Roth had little to do with the film in the beginning and was half seduced and half strongarm-convinced to lend his name and reputation to Clown. While yes, there is plenty of body Horror, as poor hapless Kent discovers himself literally turning into a demon, and lots of hack n slash as Kent makes his way towards the sacrifice the demon demands, the story behind the clown skin is quite cool and very different, a welcome unexpected treat.

So Kent McCoy (Andy Powers) is your standard real estate contractor type, he sells houses and has a wife and son he loves; your average schmo who’s done not a thing to deserve this nonsense. It just so happens that Kent wants his kid Jack (Christian Distefano) to have the happiest birthday possible, and if that means donning a borrowed clown costume he found in the trunk of some house he’s renting and going out to be the entertainment his damn self, he’ll do it. Good for you, Kent. The trouble is, now, he can’t take the damned clown suit, or that idiotic nose and the rainbow hair, off. Kent’s early attempts to get the cursed suit offa him, or at least cover it up, are some of the bright spots of a very dark movie.

Kent’s wife Meg (Laura Allen), well of course she’s mighty concerned, and it doesn’t help that the bit of clown-nose she managed to get off Kent only to have it eaten by the dog, is now causing the dog to act funny too. Tracking down the costumes previous owner, Dr. Martin Karlsson, proves difficult, but his brother Herbert (Peter Stormhare) has some answers that Kent really doesn’t like. And here is where Clown takes an abrupt turn down a very different Krampus-like path – Herbert informs Kent of the legend of Cløyne, an ancient demon of Northern Europe that requires a sacrifice of five children, one for each month of winter where it comes from, to eat before it is satisfied. That clown suit that is now taking over Kent is no suit, it’s the actual skin and hair from a Cløyne demon, and that is precisely what Kent is becoming.

From there, we have a mix of hilariously dark moments where Dadclown is still trying not to turn into Cløyne by killing himself and it so doesn’t work, or Dadclown deciding to get some revenge for his kids bullying while getting his demon parasite fed at the same time, interspersed with some truly odd moments with Herbert showing back abruptly to try and finish Cløyne off himself. Things come to a showdown in a Chuck E. Cheese’s, of all places, and we are forcibly reminded that there are few things scarier in this world, even moreso than an actual demon, than a mother afraid for her children.

The makeup affects for the body horror and transformation in the film are astounding, and they had better be, considering there’s practically nothing in the way of CGI. The feeling of plausibility that comes across, this could happen to you too in the right (wrong) circumstances, is also well done and gives the movie that extra creepy kick. While the slaughter-y scenes certainly do have Roth’s signature on them, one would be hard-pressed to tell that from the rest of the film. Director of the film Jon Watts, who also did Cop Car (and directed and freaking co-wrote the upcoming Spiderman Homecoming movie), gives us a stylized Horror flick that he clearly felt passionately about. For all Watts’ love of the movie and the Cløyne legend of the demonic clown, we are treated, almost tricked, into a Horror flick that has a bit of everything, and that is what the dark carnival is all about.

Visit the legend of Cløyne in Clown on Netflix!

‘Get Out’: Run boy run!

Posted in drama, horror, Movies, suspense, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 20, 2017 by aliciamovie

Get_Out-239552

Reviewed by Alicia Glass

Director: Jordan Peele

Studio: Blumhouse Pictures

MPAA Rating: R

Review Rating: 7.5 out of 10

We know director Jordan Peele, famous for the Key and Peele comedy duo among other things, has successfully directed other movies, but those were Comedies. So when word came out he was doing a Horror film, plenty of us fans of the genre were nervous about what it could mean. Turns out, we had absolutely nothing to worry about – Peele’s vision of a relevant to black folks Horror movie has all the self-aware snark and clever storytelling of Tales from the Hood, and I personally adored that movie. Yes, we know race will certainly be a large part of the story here, the trailer made that quite clear. But racial motivations are only half the story, while the other half is creepy as hell, and that’s what makes it a Horror movie.

Spoilers are never just black and white!

We meet Chris Washington (Daniel Kaluuya), a stoic young black man who happens to be a fairly good photographer, with prints of his work all over his nicely furnished if tiny apartment, and his bubbly white girl girlfriend Rose Armitage (Allison Williams). Chris has a friend, Rod (Lil Rel Howery), who works for the airport TSA and is the standard co-pilot type friend in any buddy-cop movie, and their conversations over the phone are the few bright spots in a dark suspenseful movie. Chris lost his mother at a very young age and is also attempting to quit smoking, all things we learn at a rapid clip once the decision has been made to grudgingly attend Rose’s families gathering at the Armitage estate out in the middle of nowheresville.

On the way there, a mighty strange encounter with a deer that I swear was thrown at their car rather than being simply struck down by it, has Chris and Rose on edge. Meeting the self-proclaimed most non-racist Dad (Bradley Whitford) around, who would’ve by his own admission gotten Obama on a third term if he could’ve, doesn’t much help. Nor does being unnerved by psychiatrist Moms (Catherine Keener) unsettling talk of hypnosis, quitting smoking, and the sound of that damned spoon hitting the china, over and over and over. Add in the psychotic ginger of a brother, Jeremy (Caleb Landry Jones) and we’ve already got a full cracker jack house.

A nighttime visit with Mom after an unsettling dream and an aborted attempt at a snuck cigarette doesn’t help Chris one bit, unless we consider his ability to be tossed down the rabbit hole by an elderly white woman fairly easily to be a good thing.

Then of course after some very weak protestations of Rose’s part, it turns out this is the weekend of the entire Armitage clan get-together, some of them rather removed, but somehow all connected in some secret way. The older white folks show up and wittingly or not, manage to repeatedly insult Chris as being the only black person there that isn’t a servant. The maidservant and the gardener, they’re both black, but they act very oddly towards Chris, especially when he starts asking questions.

Chris wanders the grounds and dutifully talks with the guests, always stoic and at least polite, as the crazy white folk continue to demean his person and Rose is of little help. We met the blind art curator, Jim Hudson (Stephen Root), who claims to know of and love Chris’ picture work, and the two of them seem to have the only really-real conversation out of anyone visiting from the Armitage clan. Chris declines to talk to really anyone else, and continually being unnerved by it all, disappears to go be with Rose. Which is good, because Dad has declared its time for the Armitage family games, beginning with bingo!

That’s no version of bingo I’ve ever played, at any rate. A mostly-silent auction is being held, and as we’ve already gathered from the trailer, Chris is the most likely prize. But why? The big grand assumption here is that these crazy elderly white folks with far too much money and time on their hands are going to participate in the greatest game, the cleverest hunt there is – that of man. But how on earth are these so-much-older white peoples planning on doing that? How is a blind man supposed to hunt anything? Turns out, the Armitage clan actually has something much worse in mind for Chris.

I won’t give the ending away, or even the real reason for the Armitage clan auctioning off Chris, but I will leave it with an interesting thought exercise to ponder. The fact that all these people, Chris and those chosen before him, were black, seems to be clear racism, yes, but in a kind of dastardly complimentary way. Like thoroughbred horses, these fine chosen black peoples have the right physical and occasionally psychological properties, that the Armitage clan is willing to pay a handsome sum of money for.

While yes, the movie is mildly predictable to me, admittedly I watch a lot of Horror movies, so that’s kind of to be expected. Peele has somehow mastered the fine tightrope line between racial tension and everybody-fears-something humanity, and manages to keep that creepy vibe throughout the film. Kaluuya delivers a masterful performance as Chris, and those acting around him, black or white or whatever else, give their roles that extra pinch of believability that makes it convincing that it all could actually happen, even tomorrow.

Run along with Chris to see Get Out, in theaters now!

‘Antibirth’: Drugs are bad, mmk?

Posted in horror, Sci-Fi with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 9, 2017 by aliciamovie

antibirth

Reviewed by Alicia Glass

Director: Danny Perez

Studio: Traverse Media

Review Rating: 6.5 out of 10

Don’t-give-a-shit druggie Lou, after yet another night of wild partying, finds herself pregnant with something possibly out of this world!

Since watching this film I discovered that the director intended it to be looked at as a psychedelic horror flick, and while the dictionary defines “psychedelic” as both having to do with the drug LSD and the trippy kaleidoscopic visions it causes, I don’t recall ever seeing Lou pop LSD in the movie. Sure, she pops everything else she can get her hands on, like a kid in a candy store, but the movie doesn’t get real specific on what the pills being popped are. Which is, actually, I think kind of the point, one of the very few plot points the film actually has.

Like most other contracted-STD horror flicks out now, the very beginning is where Lou (Natasha Lyonne) apparently gets knocked up, and the whole experience is kind of a drugged-out blur trip. Annnd then we cut to Lou and her friend Sadie (Chloe Sevigny) in the nasty-ass trailer Lou sorta lives in, where Lou complains about the mess of her life and endures pregnancy-like symptoms, all while getting high and noshing and generally not changing a single thing about the way she lives. Lou remains this way pretty much through the entire movie, with her give-zero-fucks attitude and near constant abuse of drugs and alcohol, all through the visit to the veterinary friends office for advice, the few hours of “work” at some rundown motel with another druggie friend of hers, and of course the rest of the time spent getting high on one thing or another and complaining.

It’s really hard to keep a linear timeline of whatever the hells going on in this movie, but I gather Lou’s “pregnancy” only lasts about a week or so. We the audience learn that Lou’s dealer Gabriel (Mark Webber) is also Sadie’s boyfriend, and he and his partner Warren have been keeping all sorts of secrets from the both of them. Mostly this newfangled experimental drug that already destroyed the face of one of their many hooker girls, supposedly some kind of hormone supplement that was discontinued but that Gabriel and Warren decided to distribute anyway, and guess who they administered it to.

Little happens as we follow Lou from one drug score and gripe session to the next, until damn near the very end of the movie when suddenly Lou’s stomach and nightmare psychedelic visions go into overdrive. This strange woman, Lorna (Meg Tilly), that Lou met at the motel shows up at the cottage right as Lou’s about to give birth to whatever’s straining in there, but as the mess and the sheer strangeness of it all reaches a fever pitch, these military-like guys in fatigues with big guns show up and shit gets even weirder!

Barely qualifying as a Horror flick, Antibirth rather reminds me as more of a kind of Sci-Fi warning against promiscuity, the taking of virtually any drugs or drinking, and perhaps even a tiny message against the Pro-Lifers stance of all life being sacred and a woman pregnant of rape or incest being forced to carry the baby to birth. There are some fairly good slices of that misunderstood subgenre of Horror, the Body-Horror category, but the big reveal at the end kind of moved away from that in a big hurry. A good deal of the film does indeed sport psychedelic imagery and swirling visions, characterized as a kind of acidic fever dream borne of a woman’s own desire to not be involved in the incredibly messy and, let’s face it, often downright disgusting process of giving birth.

Make sure you wash your hands after catching Antibirth on Netflix!

‘The Bye Bye Man’: You already thought it, we’re screwed

Posted in horror, Movies, suspense with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 13, 2017 by aliciamovie

the_bye_bye_man_poster

Reviewed by Alicia Glass

Director: Stacy Title

Studio: Intrepid Pictures

MPAA Rating: PG 13

Review Rating: 6.5 out of 10

“Don’t say it, don’t think it,” is the tagline for the movie and more or less the entire plot too, so let’s dive right into this!

We begin back in the sixties, atmospheric a bit like The Amityville Horror, in that we’re basically treated to Mr. Everyman who suddenly pulls out a shotgun and starts blasting away at people who’ve heard the Name. This is the only way, apparently, to end the reign of terror of the Bye Bye Man, to take out every single last person who heard the name and lastly, take yourself out too. Okay, I’m with you, onward we go to the present.

College kids Elliot (Douglas Smith), John (Lucien Laviscount) and whats-her-face, Sasha (Cressida Bonas), have found this great place off-campus to rent together, it just needs some fixing up. Fine, right? But Elliot has adequacy and trust issues, thinking Sasha has a thing for the admittedly much-smoother John, whereas John never had any problems getting plenty of fluff on the side and just wants to study and room with his lifelong friends. The character Sasha, sadly, is barely there the entire time and remains only a bone for alpha dogs to hallucinate over when the hauntings begin.

So of course a new place to live needs a housewarming party, and of course one of John’s friends, Kim (Jenna Kanell), happens to be a “sensitive”, and wants to cleanse the house with some incense burning and perhaps a séance. Somewhere during the party, the precocious little daughter of Elliot’s brother Virgil (Michael Trucco), Alice (Erica Tremblay), has to wander around upstairs and finds a suspicious stand with reappearing coins and some nasty psychotic writing, which seems to serve as the opening catalyst for the Bye Bye Man (Doug Jones) to begin his evil work. And honestly, these three characters – the psychic friend, the concerned older brother and his charming daughter – are the best characters of the movie, getting the most love from what little story there is. The Bye Bye Man himself doesn’t count, as he never speaks and yknow, just hunts and destroys. (But we forever love Doug Jones.)

So after the séance goes seriously wrong, Kim freaks out and winds up dead, and the slaughter has officially begun! Like a disbelieving dummy, Elliot starts trying to research the Bye Bye Man as much as he can, passing on the curse and barely being aware of it. Apparently BBM causes all sorts of person-specific hallucinations whilst hunting them, and can handle multiple victims at a time, and what’s with the Hellhound familiar anyway? Very little in the film is given much in the way of backstory, and while there’s plenty of creepy atmosphere to make up for it, even a morsel of why the Bye Bye Man apparently eats people who know his name would have been nice.

Elliot does get one truly great tense scene, when he’s pleading with Detective Shaw (Carrie-Anne Moss) to not make him give the Bye Bye Man’s name already, and it would have added a great deal to the morbid atmosphere if that scene had been expanded on even a little. Faye Dunaway makes a sadly brief cameo as the widow Redmon, the wife of Mr. Everyman from the beginning, too.

The general consensus after the film was that The Bye Bye Man is a nice little creepy jaunt to start a burgeoning horror fan on, seemingly aimed at 12+ or so, with that sad PG-13 rating and limp story. Creeptastic atmosphere and even the legendary Doug Jones as the Bye Bye Man himself, awesome in nothing but makeup and sheer presence, doesn’t always make up for a smidgen of story.

The Bye Bye Man haunts theaters Friday the 13th of January 2017!

And many thanks to the fine folks of Horrible Imaginings Film Festival for the early screening of The Bye Bye Man!

Rob Zombie’s ‘31’: Send in the Clowns

Posted in Action, horror, Movies, suspense with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 5, 2016 by aliciamovie

31poster_0

Reviewed by Alicia Glass

Director: Rob Zombie

Studio: Bow and Arrow Entertainment

MPAA Rating: R

Review Rating: 7

There’s no real point to an introductory paragraph for this movie, so like Rob Zombie and his singular movie-making style, we’re just gonna dive right into this. No mercy, no pity, and no escape, we’re falling headlong into another Zombie world.

Things kick off with this black and white world of a psycho clown terrorizing a victim in a priests collar, a-rantin and a-ravin to his terrified audience of one. This goes on for a while, and is abruptly ended by an axe in the guts. Now, while I’m personally all for rants from what appears to be the main villain (or one of them anyway), the opening salvo from he whom we learn later is known as Doom-head has no real bearing on what comes later. It kind of reminded me of that gross poor soul in Human Centipede 2, and that can never be a compliment.

Well anyway, backward we go to October 31st, 1979 (it says so in the tagline) and a van-full of what are apparently circus performers. And here, oh man it was inevitable, we are introduced to the eternal Sheri Moon Zombie character in every single last one of RZ’s movies, this one a simpering kerchief-wrapped chick called Charly. Roscoe Pepper is the standard muscle-man braindead type, though he does show some small bits of chivalry when shit pops off. Panda is the token black Rasta character, complete with the accent and the weed; hell, he could be considered the main token black character, as poor Levon is the first to bite it when our circus gang get where they never expected to go. And rounding out our weird-ass gang of friends, we have Venus Virgo, veteran of the circus act trade, a fighter who really should have gotten a better shot at this sick game the Scooby gang is forced into.

A stop at a self-serve gas station and some seriously odd conversations later, and hey next thing we know, Malcolm McDowell in French powdery getup is telling us it’s time for the hunting game known as 31! (I never quite understood why the Big Game itself is called ‘31’, unless it’s always held on Halloween every year.) Other fiends in French wigs and dresses are betting large sums of money on our now-numbered circus gang’s survivability, and indeed, throughout the time period of the Big Game, Father Murder pauses to announce the odds on our victims as they go up or down.

In theory, the game is simple: survive the next twelve hours, no matter what kind of insane hunter is thrown at the gang. The circus performers are even given dubious weapons, though most of them are unable to put them to effective use. And then we have the hunters, each of whom are named “something-head”, such as Doom-Head. Each hunter dresses and acts for maximum, I guess, shock effect, though how effective it truly is remains to be seen. I personally had a really hard time trying to see Sick-Head, the midget hunter dressed in Nazi clown regalia spouting Spanish (I’m not even kidding either), as anything other than a complete joke.

But we go through other hunters and most of our victims, until the victims begin to fight back better and Father Murder ups the ante, calling in their best hunter, we recognize him from the ranting intro, Doom-head, to take care of this years’ victims left once and for all.

There is a good deal of the feel of desolate roads and endless desert hell that RZ tried diligently to portray in The Devil’s Rejects, plus that throwback nightmare homage to Texas Chainsaw Massacre and of course Zombie’s own personal Dark Carnival style in 31. Legend says Zombie read somewhere a statistic that said Halloween is the number one night of the year where people go missing inexplicably, and thought it would be a good premise for a movie. The poignancy of the final end scene does kind of bring that thought home, but it was never particularly expressed in the movie itself, and without it, the film is a kind of forgery unto itself, perhaps lacking in originality but sure ready to make up for it with gore and enthusiasm – like most of Rob Zombie’s horror film work.

The Sacrament

Posted in drama, horror, Movies, suspense with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 26, 2014 by aliciamovie

the-sacrament-movie-poster

Reviewed by Alicia Glass

Studio: Magnet Pictures

MPAA Rating: R

Director: Ti West

Review Rating: 6.5

News journalists from Vice magazine travel to an undisclosed location to take a look at the newfound life of the recovering-drug addict sister of one of them, at a place called Eden Parish, overseen by the charismatic man known as Father.

This is another Ti West movie, and there have been some films of his I rather liked and some that were…less than stellar. Even discovering that The Sacrament was a found footage film, which normally I can simply do without, wasn’t a deterrent in the beginning. The three guys going to check out Eden Parish are journalists and at least one of them is used to camerawork, so the entire film wasn’t covered in shaky-cam shots, I’m pleased to say. There are a few shots interspersed in the film that almost gave me a headache trying to watch, as the guys holding the camera are being chased or are hiding, and it’s perfectly understandable that the first-person POV camera shots are shifty and gritty; at least there was reason for them to be that way. So the found footage aspect of the film itself isn’t all that bad. But that honestly doesn’t help the story, and that is the main focus of our review here.

So Patrick (Kentucker Adley), he’s a reporter for Vice magazine and is concerned about his sister Caroline, a recovering drug addict. He receives a letter from Caroline (Amy Seimetz), inviting him out to this utopian community where she’s clean and off drugs, to come see the place that is her salvation. Patrick decides to go and take reporter Sam (AJ Bowen) and cameraman Jake (Joe Swanberg) with him, which immediately leads to issues, when they discover they have to be flown by helicopter to an undisclosed location and the armed guards at the entrance to Eden Parish take issue with the fact that there are three of them instead of just one. Already overtones of stuff-isn’t-right-here are setting in, and our trio haven’t even made it in the front door! But hey, Sam and Jake and Patrick make it inside and are greeted by Caroline, who hauls Patrick off for some brother bonding time, leaving Jake and Sam to their own investigative devices.

From here, I really wish I could say that Jake and Sam discover instances of ritual sacrifice, cannibalism or hell even tax fraud, but no. The Parish has a big ole party that our guys are invited to, with revival Baptist style singing and all, and Father (Gene Jones) sits down to what was supposed to be an in-depth interview in front of everyone, but turns out to be a rant about the corruption of the outside world and all Father has done to shield these people from it, here in Eden Parish. Sam is quite off-put over the fact that Father tried to turn the interview around on him and creeped out a tad by the whole thing. Father takes Caroline with him to his house when its time for bed and after a teeny tiny confrontation with a mother who wants our reporters to take her daughter away with them, all we’re left over the course of the night is an undefined sense of wrongness about Eden Parish until morning. But in the light of day, fully a third of the Parishioners have packed and want desperately to leave, and the rest of Eden’s folk are trying to stop them, by any means necessary. Our reporters are being hunted down by the guards with machine guns and Father has ordered that the Final Solution (with the kool-aid, I kid you not) be brought out and distributed amongst all the Parishioners. Father tries to explain to his flock that this Final Solution is all that’s left to them now, as the reporters bad influence will bring the law and executions down on all of them, and how it’s better to take that choice from them before they get here. And Father sits calmly down to watch his flock die in what is absolutely not like drifting off to sleep forever, as he promised them. Caroline decides to take matters literally into her own hands and, after offing her poor brother Patrick, douses herself in flammable liquids and bids a final flaming screw-you to the world. All we’re left with is cameraman Jake, who did manage to make it out despite the fact that the helicopter pilot took a bullet, and his filmed evidence of the massacre at Eden Parish.

Yes, the film manages to maintain a semi-creepy vibe throughout the entire thing, but that’s all we have, as far as real Horror. Honestly, it’s like watching a documented version of the Jonestown massacre with a few small changes, and that’s it. You know what they say, don’t drink the kool-aid!

Jug Face

Posted in drama, horror, Movies, suspense with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 9, 2014 by aliciamovie

Jug_Face_Movie_Poster

Reviewed by Alicia Glass

Studio: Moderncine

MPAA Rating: R

Director: Chad Crawford Kinkle

Review Rating: 7.5

A teen of a backwoods community tries to escape being sacrificed to the local creature-in-a-pit when she discovers she’s pregnant.

That is a so very basic bare-bones (pun intended) summary of the plot, which despite being about your typical backwoods hillbilly community, gives off a jarring (there it is again) number of surprises. The whole thing starts off with illicit teenager sex, all frenzied pushed-aside clothing and breathless we-could-get-caught scotch love before the main event. Ada (Lauren Ashley Carter) gets informed soon after by her all-knowing parents that she’s soon to be Joined with someone other than the guy she just humped, and is singularly displeased with it. Who will take care of Ada’s grandfather, who is ailing and can hardly move at all on his own, when she’s Joined and busy? Ada’s brother doesn’t seem too happy with the idea either, he seems to harbor a more-than-brotherly affection (if you want to call it that) for Ada, which all too soon leads to questions about the parentage of her unborn baby, at least for the audience. Ada is horribly aware that she’s pregnant, and has her own suspicions as to who the father is, but none of it will matter if her parents find out she’s not pure for her Joined bed. So Ada hies herself off to hang with Dawai (Sean Bridgers), who seems to be the village idiot type, drinking illegal moonshine and making clay jugs with faces on them. Why does he do that, we ask? And that’s when the movie takes a serious turn into the backwoods bizarre. Nevermind cannibals and inbred freaks, what lurks in the pit is actually far worse.

It turns out, in the forest of their community there’s this bloody pit and some sort of monster that lives in it, whom demands sacrifice of a live person and in turn provides miraculous healing for its tending folk. We the audience never get a close look at the pit creature, even with Ada’s damning first-person visions, which just adds to the mystery and primitive lizard-brain-fear these people live with every day. Personally, I thought it was a good choice to leave the bloody monster mysterious, never really seeing it or getting any kind of explanation as to where it came from, how the community ended up in a parasitic relationship with it, and no mention was ever made as to how to stop or fight the thing. Like the inexorable tide, the pit-monster has no pity or mercy, those are human concepts.

As often happens with these lesser-brained types, Dawai seems to be gifted, cursed more like, with visions from the pit monster. That is to say, Dawai drinks and dreams, and when he wakes he makes his clay jugs with faces, the face on the jug being the next person in the community to be sacrificed to the pit. Lo and behold, the next jug that Dawai makes bear Ada’s own face, who promptly freaks out when she discovers the jug and hides it somewhere in the forest. Dawai, who seems to bear more than a passing fondness for Ada, makes a new jug that bears the face of her intended, and with all reverent haste he’s sacrificed on the altar over the pit, while his crying parents look on. And soon after it all begins to go horribly wrong, with accusations flying against Ada’s pureness, more unsanctioned deaths being carried out by the pit-monster, and the whole community begins freaking the hell out. Can Ada save herself and her unborn child, and the idiot-mystic Dawai who tried to help her, before the pit-monster comes for all of them?

Parts of the film are slow-burn, yes, and other parts are frantic with the need to get across to the audience the sheer horror of it all. The pit and the monster and its magic aside, a great deal of the atrocities visited on poor Ada are the result of what the rest of the community, these other people, did to her and made her do to others. The concept of selfish sacrifice – I offer one death so that I, or my son, may live – versus sacrifice for the greater good – I offer the sacrifice of one life, so that an entire community may live and prosper – is brought across in a rather sympathetic way in the movie. How far would you go to save your children, your family, your whole community and way of life? Jug Face presents us with a horrifyingly realistic answer.