review by Bobby Blakey
I am a huge fan of writer Simon Barrett who has delivered some great flicks including You’re Next, The Guest, and Blair Witch. Now he is taking on double duty with both writing and directing his latest feature Séance starring Suki Waterhouse, Madisen Beaty, Inanna Sarkis, Ella-Rae Smith, Stephanie Sy, Jade Michael, Djouliet Amara and Seamus Patterson. Could this flick bring the haunting necessary to make it work or will it fail to conure up the proper spirits?
Séance follows Camille Meadows, the new girl at the prestigious Edelvine Academy for Girls. Soon after her arrival, six girls invite her to join them in a late-night ritual, calling forth the spirit of a dead former student who reportedly haunts their halls. But before morning, one of the girls is dead, leaving the others wondering what they may have awakened.
I am not a big fan of ghost and haunting type films outside of a few, but my love for Barrett’s work had me pretty interested in this one. While I did enjoy the film it wasn’t near as aggressive as I think I was expecting. This isn’t anything wrong with the film, but more of my own hopes for the direction of the film. There is a decent enough twist that takes it in a different direction than I thought they were going to do for the better, but also one that doesn’t fully work for me.
I think the big issue here for me is that most of the characters are pretty unlikeable and instead of investing I was just waiting for most of them to get killed off. I assume this is by design and in turn helps you to enjoy the kills more and if that is the case it was effective. While there is some bloody moments here I was hoping for a bloodier and more creative selection of kills, but it’s also not being pushed as a slasher flick so makes sense that it is handled the way it is. I am sure this review is making it sounding like I didn’t enjoy it, but I did. It’s a good young adult horror flick with more blood than the usual PG-13 films, but still plays into that trope.
In the end this is a decent enough horror flick bringing everything you
need to succeed and no doubt for a specific audience that will no doubt eat it up. I applaud Barrett going in this direction and making the film he wanted to make and one that delivers a good entry into the genre. While this may not been one of my favorites in his catalog you can rest assured it just further makes me eager to see what Barrett has next.
Decide for yourself and grab your copy of Séance when it hits Blu-ray and DVD on August 3rd from RLJE Films.