The Wretched isn’t the kind of horror that will overwhelm the common audience. The jump scare lonely approach is an excuse. However, alternative horror connoisseurs will also not be so impressed, when the film itself is confused about what they want to be. The duo of director and scriptwriter, Brett Pierce and Drew T. Pierce (called “Pierce Brothers”), try to give birth to another homage to 80s horror, but they are torn between side-currents that emphasize atmosphere and imagery, or the horror of the Spielbergian family, which tends to produce exciting adventures. Top Movie Site
The atmosphere isn’t tense enough, the line-up of imageries isn’t as uncomfortable as it should be, and the adventures aren’t as exciting. So when Devin Burrows’ music features several Spielbergian orchestrations, it never feels quite right.
Our protagonist is Ben (John-Paul Howard), a troubled teenager who is spending his summer vacation working in the harbor with his father, Liam (Jamison Jones), while his parents are undergoing divorce proceedings. That’s where Ben smells the irregularity of their neighbor’s house, Abbie (Zarah Mahler). A series of strange events prompts Ben to investigate, then concludes that Abbie’s body has been taken over by a witch who can erase someone from his family’s memory. The magician’s target is Dillon (Blane Crockarell), Abbie’s son.
Ben has a hard time convincing people of the story. Both his father and Mallory (Piper Curda), a fellow port employee with whom he has been in close contact, all refuse to believe. Naturally. As a spectator, I failed to be made to care about Ben. He is a brash teenager who kisses another girl just moments after nearly kissing Mallory, and also escapes from dinner with Sara (Azie Tesfai), Liam’s new girlfriend, whom he came up with himself. What is the positive side of this protagonist? Best Movie
Why should I care about his mystery, in the midst of the superficiality and inconsistencies that the Pierce Brothers build regarding the mythology of the magician, including his abilities? It is said that witches are capable of brainwashing humans. In just a whisper, someone will carry out all his orders. At one point, the magician orders the police to kill Ben, but because Ben is the main character, suddenly the policeman is unable to pull the trigger.
It must be admitted that The Wretched is supported by qualified make-up and practical effects. The witch’s appearance, also when she exits the human body looks so convincing, the weak-bellied audience may feel the need to look away. But overall, The Wretched isn’t terrible. As simple as that. Placing a strange figure in a dark corner doesn’t necessarily cause horror. The chaotic climax set in the dark forest is also more dizzying than tense, due to the flash editing that’s hard to see.
Not to mention talking about a twist that makes me question the narrative point of view of the script. A twist that makes our protagonist an unreliable narrator, but considering The Wretched is spoken through a third person perspective, the surprise feels nothing more than an attempt to cheat the audience. Movie Review