In 1983, financially struggling college student Samantha Hughes takes a strange babysitting job that coincides with a full lunar eclipse. She slowly realizes her clients harbor a terrifying secret, putting her life in mortal danger.
Two best friends see their trip of a lifetime take a dark turn when one of them is struck by a mysterious affliction. Now, in a foreign land, they race to uncover the source before it consumes him completely.
Searching for a missing student, two private investigators break into his house and find collection of VHS tapes. Viewing the horrific contents of each cassette, they realize there may be dark motives behind the student's disappearance.
An investigation into a government cover-up leads to a network of abandoned train tunnels deep beneath the heart of Sydney. As a journalist and her crew hunt for the story it quickly becomes clear the story is hunting them.
The journalist Patrick works at the VICE, a company dedicated to cover bizarre news. When his sister Caroline joins a community, she travels abroad with her new family. Out of the blue, Caroline invites her brother to visit her in an undefined country and Patrick travels by helicopter with his friends Jake and Sam that work with him at VICE. They find weird that the men that have come to guide them to the Eden Parish have guns. On the arrival to the camp, Patrick, Sam and Jake find a community of happy people that worship Father. They interview Father but soon they realize that people are not as happy as they seem to be. Further, they find that they are trapped in the Parish Eden and they want to leave the place with the newcomers. But the Father does not have intention to let them go.
A predictable, creepy found-footage romp that is a cut above many.
The Sacrament is a fairly straightforward movie. It's about a group of guys who are part of a documentary film group and one of the guys' sister moves into an isolated commune and the film crew wants to know the full scoop. You'll know exactly where this movie is going as it progresses, but that isn't necessarily a bad thing. It gives a chance for director Ti West to establish some character background and vague insights into the religious group while slowly turning the creep dial up until the movie's climax. The acting is good across the board, the standout being the Father (Gene Jones) who is suitably charismatic as the cult's ominous leader. For a found-footage movie it's shot well, but of course there are the typical issues that come with the turf - impossible angles, how the footage was even found - but these are things you'd know going in. The movie itself is a well executed, suspenseful slow burn.
The biggest fault in The Sacrament is its predictability. Again, it's not a bad thing, we just know what's coming at every turn. Creepy cult, innocent people poking their noses in places they don't belong, an underlying dark scheme that slowly unravels to the protagonists. If that kind of stuff interests you and you're willing to forgive the tropes that come with the genre, The Sacrament is a worthwhile watch.
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