Thursday, October 31, 2013

The Weekend's Best <i>Scary Movies</i>

Posted By on Thu, Oct 31, 2013 at 9:30 AM

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rituals movie the creeper peter carter hal holbrook
Rituals (1977)
aka The Creeper
Directed by Peter Carter
Five doctors head out on their annual exotic expedition, this year through remote Ontario forest that the Indians considered magical, where they encounter… what? The men, led by a cantankerous Hal Holbrook, are terrorized by an unseen tormentor, like a Deliverance that replaces the rednecks with, for most of the film, nothing—just a disembodied menace that forces them to confront their dark pasts, and which makes their difficult conditions horrifying. Director Peter Carter makes the ensuing deaths carry real emotional weight; the pain is visceral, the fact that they're stranded in unnavigable terrain genuinely nerve-wracking. It's a tense human drama in the wild that ultimately spins off into unpredictable places, ending with Holbrook dressed up like Rambo and acting a bit like him, too—Vietnam recreated in the hills of North America. (Nov 2. More info here.)

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