It is Sacrament Saturday here at horror-writers and we will be continuing our coverage by including the film’s trailer in our Trailer Talk segment.
First, here is the trailer
And now my thoughts:
The idea of being trapped in a deeply cultish Religious town is an intriguing one. I’ve sounded off before about my hatred of using Religion in a film for no other reason than to create a villain but from what I saw in the trailer Sacrament stays away from this.
“But the villains are religious”, I hear you snicker, “Doesn’t that make your stance hypocritical?”
The long and short answer is “No, no it does not. Not even close and I will explain why.”
This movie plays upon the real persecution of the non-Religious and LGBT people in small towns in The United States. The villains, while appearing slightly over the top are realistically threatening. Their behavior is plausible. They are not presented in a cartoon-villain of the week sort of way. The threats and violence imposed on our protagonists is horrifying because if you read the news, it’s something you could see happening.
I also got the impression that the villains were more of a cult than followers of Christ. I grew up Roman Catholic, went to church every Sunday and actually wanted to be a priest until I was around 10 years old. Nothing about the behavior of the villains is in accordance with anything that the bible actually teaches, these are people who take an idea and turn it into an extreme “us against them” system.
The preservation of their idealistic way of life causes them to cast aside any non-believers and the way that they seem intent on committing cannibalism leads me to think of them as something other than a proper Religious sect.
I will fully admit that Religion isn’t perfect, there are still too many instances of people hiding behind The Bible as an excuse for their narrow-minded beliefs, but unless their last name is Phelps it doesn’t make them villains.
One of the things that I took away from this trailer was how it does use the real life treatment of the LGBT community by small towns and amps up the horror. The city I live in is incredibly open to it but not everywhere else is. Bank Street here is literally “The Gay Capital” of the city. Rainbow flags adorn our street signs and are prevalent in many of our shops. The fear of being attacked and murdered because you’re gay isn’t something that exists here but I know it exists elsewhere. I enjoyed that the trailer plays upon that fear and makes it a reality, albeit in a very extreme way.
TLDR; this movie doesn’t fit my “Criteria of dismissal” for the way it treats Religion because it uses real life fears behind its story.
The trailer is effective and the leads appear compelling. Even if we weren’t doing Sacrament Saturday this is a movie I’d still recommend based on the trailer alone.