Impetigore (2019) Shudder Movie Review

Director: Joko Anwar

Writer: Joko Anwar (Screenplay)

Starring: Tara Basro, Ario Bayu, Marissa Anita, Christine Hakim, Asmara Abigail

Plot: Maya with her best friend, Dini, tries to survive in a city without a family. She realized that she might inherit a property from her rich family. Maya returns to the village with Dini and unaware of the danger was waiting for her.

Runtime: 1 Hour 46 Minutes

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

Verdict: Twisted Horror

Story: Impetigore starts when two best friends Maya (Basro) and Dini (Anita) are working in their tollbooths during the night, when Maya gets an unwelcomed guest who begs her to take back something which was given to his family that has caused him such pain.

After the incident, Maya and Dini look to investigate Maya’s past in the Harjosari village being the location where Maya’s parents are from, they need to find the village elder Ki Saptadi (Bayu) to learn why somebody has finally come in search of Maya.

Thoughts on Impetigore

Characters – Maya is a bubbly young woman living in the big city, strolling to make ends meet with her best friend, when her routine job takes a turn for the worse one night, when an unknown man tries to kill her claiming her family is behind something in his village. Maya learns that her family might be rich and she might be in line for a big inheritance, which sees her making a trip to the small village, unaware of what her family has done, with her true identity being the person the villagers have been searching for, for years. Ki Saptadi is the village elder, he welcomes visitors, performances rituals and shows the leadership the village requires, he has been leading the search for Maya and now he might finally be able to achieve what he has been aiming for. Dini is the best friend of Maya who joins her for the journey, she brings humour to the film with her reactions being the most natural, knowing this isn’t a good place, wanting out, showing that her raising was against the traditional ideas the village is offering.

PerformancesTara Basro in the leading role show great chemistry in the friendship with Marissa Anita, this is important for the film, while she also handles the horror well being a strong final girl figure we all know from horror. Ario Bayu does bring the confidence his character requires to make us see the respect he demands in the village and power he has over the people to fix the problems.

StoryThe story follows two broke friends who go in search for the history behind one of their past, a past which will take them to a remote village that has been attacked by a curse the villagers are desperately trying to break and now they might have found a way. When it comes to the story we must fist dive into the culture of the people, they have a belief which will see them follow certain rituals in which they believe in a good and an evil in their lives. Where this story does seem to have the influence from other cultures is in how the haunting moments play out like the best sub-genre, an investigation with ghosts guiding the way. We get the story that could easily parallel The Ring and The Grudge with how it deals with uncovering the truth. We do get more flashbacks than we need, with one sequence that cuts between way too often instead of just showing a singular flashback. Other wise this is a horror story that does everything it needs to without becoming anything more than it can be.

Horror/MysteryThe horror in the film comes from the creepy environment, the mentality of the villagers dealing with the curse and the truth being given through the hauntings, which only adds to the mystery we are given through the film, as to why the curse in on the village.

SettingsThe film uses the settings to add creepiness in the village, with the dark environment, lighting adds to the tension which will see how everything is being held back to add to the bigger moments, add in the remote isolation making things feel even more alone for the friends.


Scene of the Movie – The complete truth.

That Moment That Annoyed Me – One flashback cuts back and forth too much, while trying to get to the big moment in the reveal.

Final Thoughts This is a twisted horror that does play into the culture of the village, bringing the curse idea to life and doesn’t hold back on the reality of the horror.

Overall: Great Horror That Brings the Atmosphere to Life.

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