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The Atoning (2017)


8/10: Low-key ghost story with a difference
Tuesday, December 31, 2019

Estranged couple Vera (a fine and appealing portrayal by Virginia Newcomb) and Ray (nicely played with quietly unnerving detachment by Michael LaCour) try to protect their son Sam (an excellent and likeable performance by Cannon Bosarge) not only from ghosts, but also from a dark secret in their past that could tear them apart as a family.Writer/director Michael Williams relates the compelling story at a deliberate pace, ably crafts a spooky and unsettling atmosphere, takes time to develop the characters, offers a credible depiction of a troubled family that's on the verge of imploding, and delivers a real nifty surprise twist at the halfway point. Moreover, the dark-skinned demon people are genuinely creepy while the ultimately sad and tragic plot gives this picture an unexpectedly haunting and wrenching underlying poignancy. Kudos are also in order for Williams' shadowy cinematography and Keatzi Gummoney's spare shivery score. Worth a watch for fright film fans who are in...

3/10: Seriously... can anyone care about these characters
Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Aside from two sanctimonious reviewers who criticised people who weren't overly positive about this movie, I think a lot of people are on the same page with this. For me, any movie where the characters haven't engaged me by the 20 minute mark is a dead loss. No matter your budget, you can still make your characters appealing or engaging for the audience. These people were so dull and monotonous that they were actually repellent in a dull, lifeless way. I watch a lot of horror (which this wasn't), and a lot of low budget movies (because everyone deserves a go, and this was definitely low budget)... but this one just didn't have any appeal at all. To be honest, I think if you're going to make something on a seriously low budget, you may want to take a chance and be creative rather than remake parts of other more successful movies in such a...

3/10: Authentic Southern Accents
Thursday, July 19, 2018

I'm thinking Tennessee, but maybe Alabama. In any case, this film is not theologically correct, but I give it a 3 because the "psychic" is really a witch in league with demons, which is very accurate on all accounts since Endor and long before that. I really wanted to love this wonderfully shot and lit film, but the lack of good, solid theology--and the shocking lack of forgiveness from an obviously penitent soul--makes it almost worthless. So, if you're into unique Ghost Stories that have little or no actual truth about them, then this one's for you. Oh, and to the reviewer who commented that the demons (Asmodeus et al) are caricatures (not realistic enough), no, this is really what they look like. I've seen one, my wife has seen so many she can't count them, and others I have met have also encountered them. They are black and menacing--but this film...

4/10: Not About Getting Fit As The Title Suggest
Thursday, September 7, 2017

A couple and their son are having several issues trying to keep the family together as they seem distant and full of tension. While attempting this their house appears to be haunted with all of them seeing ghosts. What they soon find out is that they are the ghosts and they can't leave the house. They need to figure out how to move on before the creepy shadow creatures get them.This had an interesting premise that was kind of like a serious Beetlejuice but it never reaches its full potential. It was neat how the ghosts still need to eat and sleep so they have to rely on whatever the living people own or get as groceries. The film however is an incredible slow, boring burner. I don't think anyone will watch this twice. It is a very depressing flick as well. The ghost family was lucky the other family never moved out which would've left...

5/10: The Ungrateful Dead
Monday, September 11, 2017

Ray (Michael LaCour), Vera (Virginia Newcomb) and their son Sam (Cannon Bosarge) stay in their home. There is a mystery as to what is going on. Seasoned horror film viewers should have an inkling in the first two minutes, feel certain by 20 minutes and not, it is revealed half way through the feature. Vera does not sleep in the same bed as her husband. Ray is reading a book on the atonement of the dead and people are yelling at them to get out. Vera keeps taking a picture down which goes back up. Pictures of another family show up. Every possible clue short of Nicole Kidman.There are clues as to what happened dropped early. Not too hard to figure out. Characters were boring and I found the demons too stereotypical to be frightening....dark figures from the closet

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