I suppose if you are an aficionado of horror films and have seen them all you might be sophisticated enough you can create a whole list of horror subgenres.
With “Flee the Light” you will be introduced to the Witchcraft and Possession subgenre. Horror has become a more sophisticated game than the 1958 film “The Blob” was! Of course, “The Exorcist” in 1973 may be the grandaddy of this subgenre. At university in Montreal I did a sociology project on reaction to the newly released “The Exorcist”. I attended at the lobby of the theatre where it was playing. There were people crying and running out of theatre. There were multiple fainting’s. It was close to mass hysteria. How can you approach such power in a film? A combination of great filmmaking a public relations slant that focussed on the hysteria.
Are you going to start running from the screen with “Flee the Light”? I do not think so. Your shiver meter will be running smoothly. Perhaps too smoothly as it should be smoking hot! The film is not a clunker so let’s set the record straight on that.
As a Torontonian I felt a connection seeing some of the scenes shot here and I know where! So I was pulling big time for the movie! Sentiment must take a step back from artistic quality. There is nothing wrong with the acting. How do you expect terrorized people to act? As a Canadian there is a directness and honesty about Canadian filmmaking and quite often creates the impression of a play rather than a film. The writing seems a bit patchy. The soundtrack is spot on and Canadian rockers “Tea Party” overdeliver with their song “Sister Awake”. What a perfect song for the Satan party! You can see the video for “Sister Awake” here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aiPJ2zAgITg
I mean the film at this point looks like its rocketing to multiple standing ovations but like a North Korean ICBM it strays off target.
Delfi (Ariana Marquis) and Andra (Annie Tuma) are two sisters living in Toronto. Poor Delfi has been having flashbacks of a Wiccan ceremony in the woods. Therapy doesn’t work as in a spinetingling scene the psychiatrist is frightened with what he sees so Delfi is referred to a spiritualist. Delfi continues the decline and strangely goes to her computer and somewhat magically recreates the location of the Wiccan ceremony in the woods outside North Bay. So the girls go on quest of the location renting a cabin. They find the location of the Wiccan ceremony Delfi is having visions about. North Bay may be known for its beauty but there is Wiccan community there and probably 23 Tim Horton locations!
Matters deteriorate but in a direction that may catch viewers by surprise. You might not have expected whose soul is captured and who is on the hunted list! Kudos to the film for delivering an unexpected ending.
Canadian songstress Jane Siberry plays Kata with an awkward edge but I am not sure how a Canadian Wiccan cult leader is supposed to act. I think the “awkward edge” makes her performance work.
The dog’s appearance throughout the film becomes a bit annoying at times.
You can catch the trailer here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=08s-1hJz4DI
“Flee the Light” will be available on VOD platforms including iTunes/Aple TV, Amazon, Google Play,Vudu, Vimeo and on some cable and satellite providers on February 19, 2022.
Written and produced by Jennifer Mancini. Directed by Alexandra Senza.
RKS Film Rating 76/100.