You know when your horror film is in trouble when it has more boobs than scares.
Jessie is a horror writer who is experiencing a horrid case of writer’s block. Her husband tries to convince her to go on a vacation but instead she decides to head to a home that her aunt owned that is away from the hustle and bustle of the city. She arrives in the town close to her aunt’s home to discover a less than warm welcome is waiting for her. Not to be put off by a few unfriendly people she makes her way to her aunt’s home with the help of the caretaker. He drops her off at the house but refuses to help her carry her things inside, instead making a hasty retreat away from the home. Jessie wonders what it is about her arrival and this house that everyone is trying to avoid her.
Horror fans might be interested in taking a look (or they might not be by the time I’m done with this review).
The Bottom Line
The Sacred, like most bargain bin horror films, starts off well enough. The film opens with an exorcism although we don’t know any of the characters involved. The exorcism seems to work, although it’s clear from the introduction that we are dealing with an evil presence that is very strong. So far so good.
The movie skips forward in time and we meet our main character, Jessie. We can only assume there is some connection between Jessie and the girl who was possessed in the films introduction. As the plot moves forward we discover Jessie cannot remember any of her childhood. So our suspicions about Jessie being the little girl who was possessed are correct. We get more exposition and then she heads off to her aunt’s home.
At this point, I really don’t care about Jessie. We’ve had barely any time to connect with her, and if anything I felt more of a connection with her husband. The guy immediately notices something is wrong but only lets Jessie go to her aunt’s home because she’s so insistent.
Once Jessie arrives at her aunt’s home to work on her book, it’s the usual scares. Flickers of people out of the corner of her eye. A shadow reflected in a mirror. Cleaning equipment that falls out of a cupboard onto her after a strange sound leads her there. Of course there’s also a little demon girl involved, a creepy doll, and religious iconography. It’s really a case of been there, done that, and add to add to this we don’t care about the characters so none of this feels dangerous.
The film also appears to wrap up far too quickly without any real challenge. The main character seems to get lucky and that’s that. Of course not everything is as it seems but since the main character barely broke a sweat dealing with her little “problem”, when the twist occurs it lacks any kind of impact.
The acting is also average and there’s no one who stood out of the crowd. Sometimes actors can overcome a shoddy script but unfortunately this isn’t one of those instances.
On the plus side, there’s some very good looking women in this film, and at least 3 of them aren’t afraid to take their kit off. I hear you saying. “Rowan, seriously? How does naked ladies make a horror film better?” Well the long and the short of it is that it doesn’t, but it doesn’t make this film any worse.
The music and sound are also quite well done and succeeded to at least creep me out in a few scenes.
There’s also a bit of reasonable effects work, but it’s nothing to write home about.
Overall, The Sacred is a sub-par film that lets you down with uninteresting characters, poor scares, and a predictable plot.