31 Days of Horror: Day 9- The Blackcoat’s Daughter

Posted October 9, 2017 by Thomas James Juretus in Movies

Day 9 on our hike through horror, and up today is the debut film of director Osgood Perkins (I Am the Pretty Thing That Lives in the House), the slow burn The Blackcoat’s Daughter. The film was originally titled February, and was shot in 2015. It made the rounds in various film festivals before getting a theatrical release on February 16, 2017. The movie revolves around three girls- Rose (Lucy Boynton), Kat (Kiernan Shipka), and Joan (Emma Roberts). Rose and Kat are students at Bramford, an all girl’s school. Both are left at the school over break, each for different reasons. Joan is elsewhere, and has escaped from a mental facility, and is picked up by a man and his wife (James Remar and Lauren Holly), who are on their way to the school. An evil dwells within Bramford, and all three girls must deal with it.

This is a hard film to quantify, and is sure to be divisive among horror film fans. Perkins does maintain a creepy atmosphere and a sense of dread throughout the movie, and reveals what’s happening through small clues. This is a film the demands your attention, and yet because it is slower moving, some viewers may find their minds wandering and get confused as to what is happening. It is a film best discovered on your own, and may even require multiple viewings to understand it all. Of the three girls, Boynton comes across as the weakest and least interesting. Even though she worries about being pregnant by her boyfriend, there never seems to be much urgency about her. Roberts plays a girl on edge, and we get some dark flashbacks that reveal a nasty secret about. It’s Shipka who really shines as Kat. Kat worries that her parents are dead, and that’s why they haven’t come to get her. She goes back and forth, from concerned child to one very creepy girl. When violence strikes it is sudden, and we see just enough of the evil to make it unnerving. This is definitely worth a look, even if you don’t go away liking the movie. Now showing on Amazon Prime. 7.5/10 stars

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Thomas James Juretus