Tuesday, 24 September 2013



Further evidence that you don't need massive resources to succeed with horror movies: this movie has no gore, no sex, one character on screen for the whole time in one location, minimal special effects - and it's creepy as hell. After an hour or so I had to pause the disc and put a light on; that's how incredibly scary it is. Okay, the story is on the thin side, and there's a gaping central hole that runs against basic human nature, but with this and films like The Conjuring, the genuinely creepy, genuinely scary horror film is finally making its presence felt against the grossouts and the bland remakes. Which is wonderful.

All that happens in The Last Will And Testament Of Rosalind Leigh is that Liam (Aaron Poole) returns to the family house which, as the last of the Leighs, he's just inherited in his deeply religious mother's will. He finds the place full of statues and images of angels: relics of his mother's involvement in a strange cult of angel worshippers which he'd turned his back on, along with his mother, many years ago. But is there something else in the house? Something evil which can only be stopped if he accepts that faith?

While the film cheerfully ignores the fact that anyone would spend more than about two minutes in that spooky house before leaping into the car and heading for the nearest Travelodge - and that's before the statues start moving and near invisible monsters roam the halls - it's remarkable just how much effect can be derived from one man wandering alone around a spooky house full of statues (one wonders how much it owes to recent Doctor Who episodes featuring the Weeping Angels) if the mood is set early enough, and the jumps are well enough timed. In addition there's a wonderful sadness and poignancy in Mother's voiceover (an unseen Vanessa Redgrave): she never forgot the beloved son who walked away and never called, who abandoned the faith. Creepy and unsettling, and well worth a rental.



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