A young boy becomes overly riveted by his grandmother’s death. The boy, Jacob (Luke Prael) begins dressing in her clothes, wearing her jewelry, and dancing when he is alone. This becomes too much for his step-father and mother to take. He is sent to a boarding school with only eight students, a headmaster, and his wife. In other words, he has entered the perfect setup for a suspenseful horror movie.
The Story. With this being a Non-Spoiler review, I am tip-toeing my way through the plot, but Jacob meets interesting characters once he arrives at the boarding school and most of them have a disability of some sort. The way different characters interact with each other is fascinating; however, my biggest problem is that it may have left some questions still unanswered. The film was definitely written ambitiously by Yakin, but don’t expect a nice ribbon to be tied at the end.
The Acting. Unfortunately, the acting may have been the most uneven part of the film. That’s not to say that it was bad. Luke Prael leads the film and has only been in one other feature film. The headmaster, played by veteran actor Will Patton lends a steady hand. However, some of the lines from Sterling Jerins, who has proven to be a terrific actress, seemed stale and overall it felt hokey at points.
The Tone. While watching the film, I was a little wobbly on the tone of the film. Was this supposed to be horror or suspense or drama? It seemed like the film switched from scene to scene. However, the third act came around and saved it. A terrific ending to the film by Yakin makes the movie worth a viewing. However, for some who are used to the faster-paced horror films, it may be a slog to get to the end. This is a slow-burn horror movie, similar to Kubrick’sThe Shining. It isn’t jump scare after jump scare, but a horror fan gets their blood and guts money’s worth by the time the credits roll.
If you are in the mood for a slow-burning and twist-turning ride, this delivers a sufficient trip.