FILM REVIEW: THE WRETCHED
Written and Directed by: Drew T. Pierce and Brett Pierce
Starring: John-Paul Howard, Jamison Jones, Azie Tesfai, Piper Curda, Kevin Bigley, Tug Coker, Gabriela Quezada Bloomgarden, Richard Ellis, Blane Crockarell, Ja’Layah Washington and Madelynn Stuenkel as The Wretch
Where to see it right now: Rent on Amazon Prime
Release Date: May 1, 2020
★☆☆☆☆=waste of time
★★☆☆☆=a time waster
A crafty witch casts a spell compelling townsfolk to forget about their children—making her meal less of a battle
The Pierce Brother’s coming of age horror movie The Wretched, follows 17-year-old Ben (John-Paul Howard) as he busses into the quaint, boat-slipped town where he and his dad Liam (Jamison Jones) are to spend the summer.
As Ben tries to acclimate to his new summer digs—complete with the ‘warming up to dad’s new girlfriend’ and ‘trying to fit in with the local townies’—tropes, he begins to observe strange occurrences emitting from his next door neighbor’s house.
Unbeknownst, a witch has made the house its new quarters and begins to cast a spell over the townsfolk, causing them to forget their children so that it can easily devour the forgotten ones without a tussle (smart).
When children begin to go missing though, Ben’s suspicions turn real and he must devise a plan to stop the witch and save the children. However, with a checkered past including drug use and stupidity—jumping from a second floor window-resulting in a broken arm, Ben is up against a wall as he finds it increasingly difficult to find people who believe in him.
With elements of Fright Night and The Lost Boys—meets Invasion of the Body Snatchers—all while on a snoozy summer vacation, The Wretched replaces vampires and aliens with a pagan root-like witch that prowls the woods and makes pit stops into peoples homes to eat their children.
There are no bad shots in The Wretched. Kudos to the Pierce Brothers for being natural born purveyors of horror. They know how to tell an effectively scary story. The dialog too, thank god comes off as natural and the acting is good—all of which creates a solid foundation for a decent creepy summer movie.
As always, there will be naysayers whom gloss over the accomplishments and only focus on the flaws. And The Wretched is certainly not without flaws. But follow through and you may be pleasantly surprised that more than a little thought went into making this film, and it shows.