SINISTER Add To My Top 10
Occult Horror Redux: Demonic Evil Wins Again
Release Date: October 12, 2012
Audience: Older teenagers and adults
Runtime: 110 minutes
Distributor: Summit Entertainment/Lionsgate Films
Director: Scott Derrickson
Writer: Scott Derrickson
Address Comments To:Jon Feltheimer, CEO
AKA Lions Gate Films (Summit Entertainment/Roadside Attractions)
2700 Colorado Ave.
Santa Monica, CA 90404
Phone: (310) 449-9200
Fax: (310) 255-3870
In the story, Ethan Hawke plays Ellison Oswalt, a writer who had a hit true-crime book a decade before but has been desperate for success since. He moves his unwitting wife and two children into a house where a family was violently killed and a daughter disappeared years before. Ellison hopes to solve the mysteries of what happened there and turn it into a comeback hit.
However, he ignores warnings from the local sheriff to move back out for his family’s own safety. He also lies repeatedly to his wife, claiming they are perfectly safe even as abundant evidence proves otherwise. He discovers a cache of 8 mm home movies showing various families meeting violent demises. He hides the fact he’s watching them from his family.
Eventually, an evil demonic presence called Mr. Boogie manifests itself and overcomes Ellison and his family in a gruesome way.
SINISTER contains too many scenes of the misguided protagonist investigating bumps in the night. There are also too many scenes of him staring at the home movies or having ghosts float around his house behind him, to be entertaining. However, the truly unforgivable twist is that (SPOILER ALERT) the demonic presence in the house overtly manifests itself and possesses the young daughter, who kills her family with an ax. Thus, evil triumphs completely over what little goodness appears in the movie. This ending is particularly depressing coming from director Scott Derrickson, who has made past professions of being openly Christian and drew praise from many Christian quarters for strong Christian elements in his earlier film THE EXORCISM OF EMILY ROSE. Here’s hoping he can right himself and make films where good defeats evil in the future, but SINISTER is one movie that truly lives up to its name. It’s not only repetitious and boring, but depressing and abhorrent as well.
SINISTER contains too many scenes of the misguided protagonist investigating bumps in the night. There are also too many boring scenes of him staring at the home movies or having ghosts float around his house behind him. However, the truly unforgivable twist is that the demonic presence in the house overtly manifests itself and possesses the young daughter, who kills her family with an ax. Thus, evil triumphs completely in this ultimately abhorrent horror movie.