Director(s) – Andy Collier (Fairytale, The Seventh Kind) and Tor Mian (The Sky in Bloom, The Milky Way)
Starring – Barbara Crampton (Re-Animator, From Beyond), Sophie Stevens (Break, Doctors), and Ludovic Hughes (Murder Maps, Ride)
Release Date – 2020
Rating – 2.5/5
When I was in middle school and high school I was obsessed with Barbara Crampton. She was one of my first crushes in the genre after I rented Re-Animator on one of my many different trips to stay with my brother growing up. He was living in Tennessee at the time and took me to Blockbuster.
I pretty much lived in the locally owned video store where I grew up but it wasn’t until 7th grade or so that I actually saw a Blockbuster for myself. I had snagged a few shitty no budget horror movies on DVD and noticed they had a small VHS section still. I browsed it when I found Re-Animator. I rented it and I was hooked on her smile ever since.
A few days ago I received an unexpected package from my friends over at Epic Pictures with a few promotional items and the blu for the new Norwegian occult horror flick Sacrifice. I couldn’t wait to dig into it once I saw that Crampton was in it. Thanks guys for sending it over!
**Spoiler Alert** The movie follows Isaac (Hughes) and his very pregnant wife Emma (Stevens) as they visit a small Norwegian island after Isaac inherits a piece of property there. Things start out innocently enough when the two are invited to participate in the local customs. Isaac seems to get into it more than Emma and soon becomes obsessed with it. Soon Emma discovers that the locals are part of a cult and Isaac’s past is connected to it. **Spoiler Alert**
I went into this one pretty fucking excited. A cult flick with Barbara Crampton was something I didn’t know I needed but I was definitely looking forward to seeing it. Sadly, the movie was painfully dull and the cult aspect was not fully explored. It was a great idea but poor execution.
The acting in this one is great. Crampton has a surprising amount of screen time and does a great job in her role. Stevens is fantastic as well and does a phenomenal job as the expecting mother trying to protect herself and her unborn from her fanatic husband. With all that being said, I was really surprised by Hughes’ performance. His performance is very intense and he does an amazing job at bringing out all these different emotions.
The story for this one is an amazing premise but the movie itself is so dull. The Norwegian cult aspect is extremely fun but the movie doesn’t really explore it as much as I would have liked. We need some backstory on the cult and a lot more time spent on it then what we get. The movie itself is too focused on the psychedelic dreams the pregnant wife has which has nothing to do with the story in the bigger picture. With how the film ends you would expect the dreams to have a bigger part of the story but they don’t.
Finally, the film has a few bloody moments and the final death is pretty fun but these kills are nothing memorable or original. The effects are solid as well which really makes the gag work for the film. Overall, Sacrifice has a ton of potential but the story falls short. I loved the set up of the story but the dreams sequences that lead to nowhere while the cult aspect doesn’t contribute more to the story. It’s solid for a first time watch but misses it’s mark.