Writer: Adam MacDonald (Screenplay)
Starring: Nicole Munoz, Laurie Holden, Chloe Rose, Eric Osborne, Romeo Carere
Plot: A frustrated, angst-ridden teenage girl awakens something in the woods when she naively performs an occult ritual to evoke a witch to kill her mother.
Runtime: 1 Hour 30 Minutes
There may be spoilers in the rest of the review
Verdict: Thriller Lacking the Bite
Story: Pyewacket starts as we meet the mother Mrs Reyes (Holden) and her daughter Leah (Munoz) who are both struggling with the loss of their husband and father, Leah has turned to the occult for answers while Mrs Reyes has become distant from her daughter, she decides to leave their home because of the memories, forcing Leah to need to travel to and from school for the remain part of the year.
Deciding she wants to get back at her mother, Leah performs a ritual to summon a witch to kill her mother, one that she instantly regrets when she gets haunted by a mysterious figure in the dark.
Thoughts on Pyewacket
Characters – Leah is a teenage girl struggling with the death of her father, becoming distant from her mother and wanting to look at the occult. After she is moved away from her friends, she continues to hate her mother which leads her down a dark path against her mother turning to the occult once again for answer, this only fills her with paranoia and fear of just what she has unleashed. Mrs Reyes is the mother of Leah, she is struggling too which is shown with her relationship with Leah, she is trying to keep everything together though. Janice, Aaron and Rob are the friends Leah hangs around though we never see enough of them.
Performances – Nicole Munoz is in the leading role, she is in every scene and is the one we need to see perform, she is great through the film, each decision her character makes we believe her performance throughout. Laurie Holden is the only other star that gets any major screen time and does a good job.
Story – The story here follows a troubled teenager that turns to the occult to help her with her problems only to regret the decision she makes once she gets visited by the unknown. This story tries to address the grieving process that people will go through after losing a family member, we see the extremes someone will turn to and just how difficult the communication can be. When we see the horror side of the story we get to look at how dangerous the occult is and just what it can do to your mind through the increased isolation from friends. This isn’t the most engaging story and does go in the directions you would expect without having that shock moment before the end.
Horror – The horror elements of the film focus on the occult and what you could unleashes when you mess with something you just don’t understand.
Settings – The film starts in a family home location which holds memories, moving to the woods we create the isolation which only adds to the horror in the film.
Special Effects – The effects are not needed too often, the times we need them, they are mixed in quality too.
Final Thoughts – This is a horror that tries to channel real emotions with everything it goes through, it uses the occult to try and balance the grieving process only to miss the point of both sides of this idea.
Overall: Simple occult horror.