The Pact Movie Review
Written by TGM
Distributed by IFC Films
Written and directed by Nicholas McCarthy
2012, 89 minutes, Not Rated
Released on VOD on May 25th, 2012 and theatrically on July 6th, 2012
Caity Lotz as Annie
Casper Van Dien as Creek
Mark Steger as Charles
Haley Hudson as Stevie
Kathleen Rose Perkins as Liz
Sam Ball as Giles
After the death of their abusive mother, two women go back to the home they were tormented in so they may lay rest to a bevy of personal demons. Little do they realize how literal these demons have become. When one of the sisters goes missing, it’s up to her younger, brash sibling to try and piece it all together.
Despite an uninspired title, The Pact is a surprisingly effective horror/thriller that manages to do one thing superbly well, and that is build tension. The eventual payoff may not be as satisfying as teased, but the journey is often outstanding. There is a fantastically creepy scene involving Skype that will literally send shivers down your spine. The Pact was originally conceived as a film short, and as such cannot help but suffer from not having quite enough substance to carry a feature length film. The ending twist is decent, albeit muddled, crumbling under the weight of its own implausibility.
The smoldering Caity Lotz, as the tough-as-nails biker-chick sister, manages to carry the movie, even during its most strenuously redundant scenes that exist primarily to bolster the runtime. It also doesn’t hurt that she is nice to look at. Haley Hudson as the emaciated Stevie, a strung out clairvoyant brought in to help sort things out, also gives a very convincing performance. Oh, and there is a Casper Van Dien sighting! Who knew Johnny Rico would end up a cop? Van Dien is a bit miscast here as the hardboiled police detective despite some wrinkles and age lines, simply because he’s still too pretty to play such a grizzled shlub.
All in all, The Pact is certainly worth your time despite being a mixed bag of clichéd and novel ideas. I am eager to check out the short film it is originally based on, as, much like I routinely tell my wife, longer doesn’t always mean better.
Video, Audio and Special Features:
Video, audio and special features will not be graded as this was a screener.