31 Days of Horror 2018: Day 13- Apostle

Day 13 (but not a Friday) on a trek through tales of terror on the screen, and up today is Apostle. Thomas (Dan Stevens) goes to a remote island to rescue his kidnapped sister, Jennifer (Elen Rhys) from a cult run by Prophet Malcolm (Michael Sheen). Once he arrives there, he tries to keep his identity a secret, so as not to endanger his sister. As he seeks a way to free her, he uncovers the twisted secret behind the cult, a secret more horrifying than he could imagine. 9/10 stars

Religious cults have been the subject of horror movies before (The Wicker Man, Children of the Corn) but director Gareth Evans (The Raid: Redemption) manages to keep things fresh even while some things are disturbingly familiar. Sheen (Underworld) works well as the charismatic leader of the cult, who struggles with trying to do right by his followers. Stevens (Legion, Beauty and the Beast) makes for a good protagonist, and the rest of the cast does well, with Sharon Morgan (The Library Suicides) giving a nicely creepy performance as the object of the cult’s worship. The religious fanaticism rings all too real here, and it meshes well with the supernatural elements and the depictions of bloody rituals. Well worth checking out. Now showing on Netflix.