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Sator  (DVD)


Stars: Gabriel Nicholson, Michael Daniel, June Peterson, Aurora Lowe

Director: Jordan Graham

Those Blair Witch films have a lot to answer for. In a film shot in semi-darkness, we're back in those woods again, made as sinister as the director can manage on a shoestring budget. There are two men with beards who appear to looking for a woodland deity that appears to have possessed the mind of their aged mother.

Adam (Nicholson) who is perhaps mentally disturbed, has his dog for company, though the beast is obviously doomed. The wind blows and trees rustle. And so it goes, or rather creeps along, at a pace that makes you think the whole thing could be done and dusted in 20 minutes.

Sator himself makes only the briefest of appearances towards the end, while his woodland familiars shuffle along , looking like Wombles after a bad day. Sound effects are turned up to the max to try the occasional jump scare, and it's just a pity they couldn't have done the same with the dialogue; only the old lady (Peterson) is really clearly audible.

There's the odd half-seen thing and images repeated and held ad infinitum, but you wonder why anyone would stick around for five minutes in this benighted forest. I would say the film demands patience, but stamina would be more like it.

Available on digital platforms, DVD from 22 February.

David Quinlan

USA 2019. UK Distributor: Lightbulb. Colour/black and white.
83 minutes. Widescreen/4 x 3. UK certificate: 15.

Guidance ratings (out of 3): Sex/nudity 0, Violence/Horror 2, Drugs 0, Swearing 2.

Review date: 16 Feb 2021