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The Cursed (2022)

Dentistry in the nineteenth century must have been a bitch. All those coins you have to melt down to get a decent pair of gnashers. Sean Ellis writes and directs for a better than expected cast (if you don't include those meddling kids) and this project enjoys some interesting cinematography and honestly decent production design. The last time I came across Ellis directing, it was for Metro Manila (2013), which I truly enjoyed much more than I had expected, so I was hoping for the same here. The addition of Kelly Reilly and Alistair Petrie didn't put me off one bit, either.

As if a timely reminder was needed, this sends a very clear and pointed message about claiming land that does not belong to you and the consequences of wiping out a group of people you know nothing about, especially if they're a bit handy with the dark arts.

Land Baron (Petrie) and his short-sighted cronies kills off a load of gypsies as they are claiming the rights to some of the land he believes he owns and they're not shifting despite warnings and a substantial payoff being offered. Well, this is a horror movie, so you know that isn't a smart move and that this will (literally) come back to bite him.

Just gory enough to make most of us wince more than once, and just creepy enough to make you want to leave a light on. The script isn't great, but the rest of this feels suitably authentic, even if feels like it dawdles too often. Better than I was hoping for but this is still Ellis slumming it, if we're honest.

Oh, and Boyd Holbrook is in it too.


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