Welcome to our monthly look at the horror and horror-adjacent films and shows we consumed the previous month.
Bloodride (2020 – Netflix)
Bloodride is a Norwegian horror anthology that runs the gamut from grim thrillers to dark comedies. Like most anthologies of this ilk Bloodride suffers from a severe case of inconsistency. There are a handful of stories, such as opener “Ultimate Sacrifice”, that are well worth the 30 or so minutes you’ll put into it, and there are others that could be easily skipped. What makes this series so frustrating is that at only six episodes you’d hope for a higher success rate. It’s one thing if this were a ten or twelve episode series. You’d be forgiven for cranking out the occasional stinker of a story. However when roughly half of what’s presented plays out like stories written by the one goth kid in your local high school trying their best to be spooky it’s less forgivable.
Rating (Out of 10): 5
Son (2021 – Shudder)
Son tells the story of a woman who has escaped from a cult and must come face-to-face with her past when cult members break into her home and attempt to steal her child. As the film evolves her son comes down with a mysterious illness and she’s driven to the brink trying to save him, including making some shocking choices along the way. While the premise of Son isn’t something that’s wholly original, the script offered enough twists and turns to hold your interest. My only complaint about this film is that every time it leaned into one of these twists it almost felt like they didn’t know where to go with it, and it would backslide into cliche after cliche. Still if you’re looking for recently made, fairly well-paced horror movie you could certainly do worse.
Post Mortem: No One Dies In Scarnes (2021 – Netflix)
Another Norwegian-produced series, Post Mortem begins with a woman who is found dead in a field outside of town, only to wake up on the autopsy table. What unfolds next is one of the better dark comedies I’ve seen in quite some time. I wavered on whether to include Post Mortem in this post. While there are certainly some very dark scenes, especially as the circumstances around this woman’s death and why she has seemingly risen from the dead are revealed, the core of Post Mortem lies squarely in the drama-dark comedy realm. However, there is certainly enough dark material in this show for even the pickiest of horror nerds to find it intriguing. The story is well-crafted, the acting is excellent, and the cinematography captures both the beauty and uniqueness of small-town Norway.
The Old Ways (2020 – Netflix)
Sometimes I overthink things. Sometimes I get so caught up in the minutia that I loose sight of what’s sitting right in front of me. I do this with movies from time to time. Sometimes I’ll watch a trailer and I’ll think of ways that the film could be better, or at least offer more, than the two minutes I’ve just seen when in reality the film is probably going to stink. This was one of those times. The Old Ways revolves around a Mexican-American reporter who returns to her hometown in Mexico in search of a story about witchcraft. Instead she’s kidnapped by a small group of locals who insist that she’s possessed. What follows is roughly 90 minutes of absolute schlock. The story is one part allegory about how you can indeed come home (but you have to face your demons, obviously) and one part teeny-bopper ridiculousness. I literally almost fell asleep midway through this film. I should probably have finished that nap instead.