THE LONG NIGHT, directed by Rich Ragsdale, was a thougt provoking horror film that unleashed gazes of beauty and mounts of terror in the same frame. While the scenery was memorizing, the eerie storyline kept my attention rising from beginning to end.
For me, love and romance entangled in spine-chilling narratives are always compelling, and the film started with a long day inviting us into the endearing relationship between a thriving young couple. A promising trip, that was supposed to give them enlightening answers, flared up into a passage of unexpected questions. Grace (played by Scout Taylor-Compton, Rob Zombie’s HALLOWEEN and HALLOWEEN II) returning to her southern birth place to dig up unsettling roots amidst her family tree leads to hidden agendas from her gruesome past. It drags Grace and her loving boyfriend, Jack (Nolan Gerard Funk, HOUSE AT THE END OF THE STREET), into a horrifying path of unforeseen awakenings.
Their unwavering chemistry, and Funk’s light humor during the most dreadful times, gave extra depth to such a riveting and scary movie. And, without giving anything away, I will just say that actress Deborah Kara Unger (SILENT HILL, SILENT HILL: REVELATIONS, THE GAME) ascended with a potent presence.
I was also intrigued with the distinctive camera angles stretching across the captivating southern landscape. How could something so ominous exude such engaging visuals? Even the darkest moments looked like collages of gorgeous, gothic art.
This was one of the most artistically driven horror films I’ve witnessed in a long time. It made the environment its own important character that helped to define the backstory.
The disturbingly layered score played like an amazing symphony over some of the most terrifying scenes – as if pain was pleasure, and pleasure was solace. Voices sung melodies of doom invading the hope onto which the sweet loving couple held. The choice of music echoed the true essence of what was going on in each scene.
I love when horror films mirror real life ideologies that are not too farfetched. For me that makes it even scarier as a hardcore horror appreciator. The occult narrative has been done over and over again in Hollywood, so it is always refreshing to see a different take on it.
The film was just the long fright night I needed. The writing was well executed and spoke volumes of real-life traumas into an overload of monstrous drama – that will unquestionably be a cult classic. I rate it 5 out of 5 beats on the MMTrometer.
THE LONG NIGHT is in theaters and available on digital today February 4.