and her sister handle stress badly. The
former just runs away, while the latter self-medicates. They are both attractive though, so midnight
movie patrons will likely forgive them their shortcomings in Nicholas
McCarthy’s The Pact (trailer here), which opens
today in New York at the IFC Center.
two sisters had a horrible childhood, but we never really learn why. It was so bad though, Annie has never
forgiven her mother for it. As a result,
the ex-junkie sister is stuck being the responsible one when their mother
passes away. Then one night (in a Grudge-like opening scene) something bad
happens to her in their old house.
Reluctantly, Annie finally comes to investigate her sister’s
disappearance, suspecting she has simply relapsed once again. However, after spending her own harrowing
night in the family casa, Annie comes to understand there is something
seriously sinister afoot there.
some seemingly out-of-character reason, biker Annie goes straight to the
coppers to report her house is haunted.
Of course, all this really gets her is an opportunity to indignantly
protest her sanity. At least, Creek the
good cop is willing to swing by to take a few photos or something.
be fair, the horror movie mechanics of The
Pact are pretty good, including the first (and probably last) genuinely
creepy internet search sequence.
McCarthy also blends the elements of the supernatural and psycho killer
sub-genres fairly effectively. Still,
there is an over-reliance on unrealistically dumb flat foots and cheap scares
built around sudden loud noises. The
clear implication that the outward Christian piety of Annie’s family masked
something profoundly hypocritical is also a tiresome cliché. Just once it would be cool to see a horror
movie in which the psychopath was a loud mouth atheist jerk.
it must be conceded both Caity Lotz and Agnes Bruckner have the right assets to
play the haunted sisters. They truly
look like twins and already have considerable scream queen cred with the
fanbase. Evidently Starship Troopers’ Casper Van Dien is now taking the parts Michael
Biehn passes on, but he is not terrible as the jaded but decent Creek.
You will see better horror movies than The Pact and you will see worse. Fanboys will certainly want to see more of
Lotz and Bruckner. Overall it is a solidly
serviceable, but only occasionally inspired chiller, probably best seen with a
large and slightly buzzed audience during its late night screenings at the IFC
Center, starting tonight (7/6).
Labels: Agnes Bruckner, Caity Lotz, Horror Movies