• Cody Fuhrman

"The Dark and the Wicked" is the Scariest Thing I've Seen at Fantasia 2020

Updated: Feb 19

Bryan Bertino's latest feature is absolutely terrifying.

Image Courtesy of Fantasia

“The Dark and the Wicked” follows Louise (Marin Ireland) and Michael (Michael Abbott Jr.), siblings who have returned to their family home to be with their dying father (Michael Zagst) and unstable mother (Julie Oliver-Touchstone). It is written and directed by Bryan Bertino of “The Strangers” except he’s traded a creepy cabin in the woods for an even creepier sheep farm in the middle of nowhere.

Image Courtesy of Fantasia

As if the imminent death of parents isn’t burden enough, something sinister has taken over the farm and it’s taken notice of Michael and Louise. It has a penchant for playing sick mind games with the pair, preying on the kind of vulnerability that comes with isolation and loss. If you like jump scares, this film is for you and they’re perfectly paced. Just when you’ve recovered from the last one and let your guard down, another one sneaks up from behind to scare the living daylights out of you.

Image Courtesy of Fantasia

If this film succeeds at anything, it’s that it’s truly terrifying for the entirety of its 90-minute runtime. Also, Tom Schraeder’s eerie piano score immediately got stuck in my head and sounds like something I’d like to put on my Halloween playlist. Written and filmed entirely on Bryan Bertino’s family farm outside of Dallas, “The Dark and the Wicked” exposes a kind of evil that seeps into homes marked by seclusion. The kind of homes that are cut off from their communities and extended family. The kind of homes that are amidst a global pandemic perhaps?

Image Courtesy of Fantasia

The "Dark and the Wicked" will be released November, 6 2020 in theaters and on VOD.

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© 2020 by Cody Loves Horror.