Director – Caradog James (It’s My Shout, The Machine)
Starring – Katee Sackhoff (The Flash, Robot Chicken), Lucy Boynton (The Blackcoat’s Daughter, Let Me Go), and Richard Mylan (The Demon Headmaster, Immortality)
Release Date – 2016
Rating – 2.5/5
After a three day weekend of doing nothing but playing Ark: Survival Evolved and Call of Duty: WWII I am back to watching horror. As Thanksgiving approaches and the sense of dread that falls over most working class Americans about if they will be able to afford Christmas presents this year (the games were presents from my wife so don’t bash me for noting being rich) I decided to break out some dark horror films that hopefully have some gore.
The first on my chopping block is the IFC Midnight/Scream Factory released Don’t Knock Twice. When it comes to artwork I prefer the modern tributes to classic movie posters. If you don’t know what I’m talking about I suggest you check out Sadist Art. With that being said, I really liked the artwork for Don’t Knock Twice which made me a little excited to see the film.
**Spoiler Alert**The film follows a mother and daughter pair who are very distant. The mother is a successful artist that suffered from drug addition for years and gave her daughter up. Now, after being sober for sometime and remarried she wants her daughter back and is fighting for custody from the state. He daughter and her boyfriend hear about an urban legend near their home and decide to try it. The legend says you will awaken a witch if you knock on her door twice. They do and her boyfriend goes missing. Not long after she starts seeing strange things and finds herself being hunted by the witch who wants to use her to capture others to feast on. Her mother doesn’t believe her at first but quickly learns the truth. Now she must fight to protect her daughter from the evil presence while trying to retain custody of her.**Spoiler Alert**
Several people told me they liked the film when I shared on social media that I was watching it. This only fueled my curiosity but once the film started rolling I wasn’t that impressed with what I saw. The last few moments of the film were great but leading up to it was not.
The acting in this one is so so. The cast dedicated themselves fully to their role but there was times where they lacked conviction. The cast would just spit out their dialogue and I saw no heart or emotion. It was evident that they were there for the paycheck.
The story for this one is well written but starts out painfully slow. I’ve seen my fair share of moody thrillers that took time to build to the ending but this one pushes the viewer’s patience. The ending is action packed and wrapped the story up nicely but the beginning and middle needs something added to hold the viewer’ attention.
Finally, this one does have a few on screen deaths with some great practical effects but they are easily forgettable especially if you consider the viewer is almost asleep at this point. The effects are great and I love how the witch looks but there was no originality placed into the death scenes. Overall, Don’t Knock Twice dropped the ball. The cast isn’t motivated and the story is painful to sit through. This is, by far, the weakest of the IFC Midnight and Scream Factory collaborations.