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Stars: Sosie Bacon, Kyle Gallner, Jessie T Usher, Robin Weigert, Kai Penn, Caitlin Stasey

Director: Parker Finn

Here's a horror film that exists almost entirely for its jump scares and jaw-dropping monsters. Both are in plentiful supply here, as troubled (and overworked) therapist Rose Cotter (Bacon, daughter of Kevin) who works at a psychiatric hospital, interviews a patient (Stasey) who implies that she is being possessed by an evil spirit that makes her see people who then metamorphose horrifically into others.

Before Rose's horrified eyes, the patient, grinning, cuts her own throat.

Home with her fiance (Usher) and cute cat Mustache - the cat is always the first to go in these things and so it proves here - Rose begins to see shadowy entities that aren't there, and has to seek therapy herself and take a week's leave from the clinic.

When she buys her young nephew a toy train engine, there can be few of us, as the moppet unwraps his present, who don't expect the contents to be a dead cat rather than a toy.

Increasingly beset by grisly visions, Rose find she is the latest 'participant' in a chain that extends back at least 20 cases of sudden death, in which the victims can only pass on the entity that grips them by topping themselves or killing someone else.

There seems to be no way of stopping the cycle, so we can only sit and wait for an inevitable tragic ending. In the meantime, the director stuffs his overlong film with gory special effects and dark spaces followed by sudden screeching noises and apparitions that introduce another of his (largely successful) attempts to make us jump.

Bacon's visually fine as the beleaguered Rose, although some of her dialogue is less distinct than that of other players.

David Quinlan

USA 2022. UK Distributor: Paramount. Colour by Fotokem.
115 minutes. Not widescreen. UK certificate: 18.

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

Review date: 27 Sep 2022