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Sinister (2012)

2:15 | Trailer
Washed-up true crime writer Ellison Oswalt finds a box of super 8 home movies in his new home that suggest the murder that he is currently researching is the work of a serial killer whose work dates back to the 1960s.


Scott Derrickson
1,752 ( 141)
3 wins & 13 nominations. See more awards »





Complete credited cast:
Ethan Hawke ... Ellison Oswalt
Juliet Rylance ... Tracy
Fred Thompson ... Sheriff (as Fred Dalton Thompson)
James Ransone ... Deputy
Michael Hall D'Addario ... Trevor
Clare Foley ... Ashley
Rob Riley Rob Riley ... E.M.T.
Tavis Smiley ... Anchor
Janet Zappala Janet Zappala ... Reporter
Victoria Leigh ... Stephanie
Cameron Ocasio ... BBQ Boy
Ethan Haberfield Ethan Haberfield ... Pool Party Boy
Danielle Kotch ... Lawn Girl
Blake Mizrahi ... Sleepy Time Boy
Nicholas King ... Bughuul / Mr. Boogie (as Nick King)


Crime writer Ellison Oswalt moves his family into a house where a horrific crime took place earlier, but his family doesn't know. He begins researching the crime in hopes of writing a book about it. Oswalt examines video footage that he finds in the house to help him in his research, but he soon discovers more than he bargained for. Written by Michael Hallows Eve

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


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Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for disturbing violent images and some terror | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Did You Know?


The song 'Gyroscope' by Scottish electric band Boards of Canada, used in the end credits, and film burning scenes in this movie are recycled for Sinister 2 (2015) and played during a few scenes. See more »


(at around 32 mins) Items, products and family belongings seen in the super 8 home movies often weren't available in the decades that the home movies are set in. Most notably is the kitchen refrigerator seen in the 1998 'Sleepytime' home movie reel - the model of fridge shown in the home movie wasn't available commercially until 2009-2010. See more »


[first lines]
Tracy: Just one box?
Ellison Oswalt: It's for my office. It's fragile.
Tracy: Sissy.
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Featured in Projector: Sinister (2012) See more »


CineTronic Blood
Written and Performed by Daniel Wehr
Courtesy of CineTronic
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User Reviews

brings the horror back into horror
17 January 2017 | by nick121235See all my reviews

One of the scariest horror movies I have seen in a long time. I put off watching this one for a quite a while because when I first started it I noticed it had dim lighting which is a pet peeve of mine. Once I decided to watch it at a later date however, I realized that the cinematographer actually made very effective use of light/dark contrasts, highlighting what we need to see and using the dark spaces to create a cloistering atmosphere of dread and claustrophobia. The performances are also very good, especially the lead, although I feel as though they could have given us more background on the rest of the family. Also the ending isn't what I expected at all and I feel there could have been more action but it did fit in with the rest of this movie which can be quite slow at times, but you hardly notice because of the way this film draws you into it's world. The super 8 sequences were terrifying, they had me on the edge of my seat. In my opinion Sinister is probably one of the best horror films of this decade.

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Release Date:

12 October 2012 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Untitled Scott Derrickson Project See more »

Filming Locations:

Los Angeles, California, USA See more »


Box Office


$3,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$18,007,634, 14 October 2012

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

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Company Credits

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Technical Specs




Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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