The criticisms of Daniel Farriol:
Pentagram American horror film written and directed by Steve Lawson (The Haunting of Alcatraz, Bram Stoker’s Van Helsing), based on a story by Matthew McGuchan and Jonathan Sothcott. Four petty thieves break down their car while fleeing their latest robbery. They decide to enter a house that seems abandoned without knowing that there has been a satanic ritual that will force them to remain inside a pentacle if they do not want to die. It is starring Chloe Farnworth (12 Hour Shift, First House on the Hill), Alexis Rodney (Feedback), Nicholas Bal (Doom Room, La casa del terror), Rachel Warren (Black Ops, Tribal Get Out Alive), Michael McKell, Jessica Arterton, Charlie Woodward and Emily Price. You can see it in Netflix from September 3, 2021.
Bad B series
Pentagram is another mediocre Series B horror film made by the British independent film production company Hereford Films (a Blumhouse de baratillo) which is specialized in recording low-budget films such as churros with the producer Jonathan Sothcott front, known as the “DVD King” (a Roger Corman cheap). This supernatural horror proposal directed by Steve Lawson, director of jewels of the exploit rougher as KillerSaurus (2015), it is only scary because of how poorly directed and boring it is.
The film begins with a sequence that, because of the way it is shot, seems to want to imitate the initial robbery of the cafeteria carried out by Pumpkin and Honey Bunny in the unforgettable Pulp Fiction (Quentin Tarantino, 1994). There is a constant attempt to Americanize the plot, even the actors force the accent of their English, which makes everything even more ridiculous. Here we have a group of four petty criminals formed by Luke, Max, Lauren and Holly, the latter a drug addict who begins to have “the monkey”. After the robbery, their escape is interrupted when the car breaks down in the middle of a lost road that leaves them stranded in the middle of Deep America. Nearby there is a house that seems abandoned, but they soon discover that inside there is a man who has made a satanic pact that will force them to stay inside a pentacle if they do not want to be devoured by a demon. We will soon understand that the penalty is that the devil cannot enter that chalk pentacle to eat them all and save us 80 minutes of suffering.
If Asmodeus raised his head…
The starting idea of Pentagram It is not terrible and it could have been used for a good short or for a feature film that explodes the tension and struggles for the survival of a group of people in their virtual confinement within the pentacle. The rules are basic. To keep the circle safe and not be attacked in this dimension by the demon Asmodeus, the candles must always remain lit and in place. It is curious that the candles have an arbitrary duration according to the needs of the scriptwriter and as soon as the wax of all is finished in a few seconds as it can make a decorative candle of a few centimeters infinite. But beyond those considerations about the script’s pitfalls, the film has little suspense or inventiveness, the visuals are crappy, and the dialogue seems to be written by a kindergarten kid.
References to the British terror of the 60-70s produced by the Hammer What Devil’s Bride (The battle of Satan) (Terence Fisher, 1968) the The possessed nun (Peter Sykes, 1976) are too big for him. Neither the mythological history of the devil is taken advantage of, nor the situation of tension between the four friends who must make the decision to sacrifice someone in order to save themselves and stop being cursed. That the film is low budget does not justify that it is shot with so little talent. The action takes place almost entirely in an empty room and Steve Lawson he does not know what to do to give some dynamism to the matter. In addition, the photography of Richard John Taylor it is horrifying, more concerned with using absurd filters to shade and contrast colors than with creating a minimal disturbing atmosphere. We don’t even talk about the better actors. Everything is a real disaster that is not even good for a laugh. If Asmodeus raised his head … he would run back to the underworld with his tail between his legs. You are warned.
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