Learning to forgive through unbridled horror in ‘A Dark Song’

by Jason Ridder on May 13, 2017

in Print Reviews,Reviews

[Rating: Solid Rock Fist Up]

A Dark Song lingers slowly, cranking up the dread the further down this dark ritual progresses in this two-character horror drama. Following a mother whose son was murdered by teens, her mission is unforgiving revenge.

The movie follows Sophia (Catherine Walker). Leasing a massive, creepy home in Wales and enlists the help of a professional occultist named Joseph Solomon, played by the excellent Steve Oram. The plan: summon Sophia tells Solomon she wants to summon her guardian angel and talk to her son one more time. However, Sophia doesn’t reveal her true intentions to seek vengeance.

The pair quickly begin the bizarre rituals required to make contact with the beyond. However, Solomon’s aggressive behavior quickly pushes Sophia to her limits. This all boils down to a violent confrontation when Solomon learns Sophia’s true goal of revenge on her sons murderers. The struggle leaves Solomon seriously injured.

The slowly mounting dread of this film is the true highlight. It will seem slow and plodding to many viewers, but director Liam Gavin does a phenomenal job cranking this film into a taut dramatic tale of horror, not relying on jump scares to keep the viewers interest. The dramatic, dreadful build up is the true highlight for A Dark Song. Throughout Sophia’s journey we see the changes in her feelings for her tragic loss as she realizes vengeance may not be the solution to healing her pain.

The skin-crawling score is another big highlight to this story of dread by Ray Harman, sending you further into the abyss of Sophia’s determination to exact horrific revenge.The deep cellos and cringeworthy violins keep you on your toes throughout, not because of the sudden scares, but more a journey through one woman’s emotional quest to get satisfaction from her young sons senseless murder.

Both Oram and Walker completely carry this closed quarter dramatic horror tail. The film is both worth a viewing for the dramatic and often sad tale of horror. But scares are not the real goal of this indie tale. What it truly boils down to is a mother’s quest to learn how to forgive those who have delivered such tragic loss.

While parts will seem to drag for many viewers, if you are patient and appreciate the painful drama, A Dark Song is definitely a movie you should check out. It is now playing at Screenland at Tapcade and is highly recommended to the more sophisticated horror fan.

Jason is a former Emmy award-winning television news producer, film fanatic and pop culture geek. He has a soft spot for horror, sci-fi and fantasy and loves talking and writing about movies.

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