Still/Born is a new horror movie that definitely shouldn’t be watched by anyone pregnant or with a baby in the house. Perfectly timed terror from start to finish.
After watching it, I can confirm that it is indeed very creepy. The tension and score alone had me on edge all the time. And when I had managed to scream my head off twice within the first 15 minutes, I knew we had a horror winner on our hands.
For the record, my Heaven of Horror nickname may be ScreamQueen, but I rarely scream during horror movies anymore.
Still/Born made me fear I would be screaming more than ever, but not due to crazy jump scares. Well, those are part of it. But more than that it’s simply because the vibe is so dark and creepy.
You can watch the trailer for Still/Born right here or continue reading our review below.
The horror of what you don’t see
Some of the scariest moments in Still/Born are things you can’t see. Either because the characters shy away from exploring what went bump in the night. Or because it can’t be seen.
Throughout the movie, we’re forced to wonder whether the scary stuff is real or all in someone’s head.
However, for good measure, you do also get to see plenty of creepy things. Also, you hear the creepy thing talking. The creepy thing is a demon of a sort, which you’ll get more information on in the movie. What I can tell you is that it wants the newborn baby.
And will use all sorts of trickery to get to little Adam. Just when you think you know how it’s attempting to trick the mother, something else tends to happen. So don’t ever feel too confident you’ve figured it all out.
A loving and realistic couple
I loved that Still/Born featured a very realistic and loving couple. This may not sound very horror relevant, but it is relevant to the heart of the story. It makes the challenges this couple face hit even harder.
Also, I think it is so important that the husband (Jesse Moss) is shown as a loving and devoted father as much as a husband. Clearly, he was looking forward to the expansion of their family as well. Loving fathers are shown far too rarely. Or rather, they may be shown as loving, but tend to be distant and not really involved with daily chores.
In Still/Born, dad is quick to grab the baby. Both because he wants to unburden his wife, but also because he enjoys spending time with his son.
The real issue, however, is the fact that the new mother is struggling with postpartum depression. And possibly something much more sinister is at work as well. The new parents do everything right in terms of seeking help. But since only the wife is experiencing the more supernatural elements, they can’t really tackle this properly.
Jesse Moss (Ghost Wars) is perfect in his role as the husband and father, Jack. For many scenes, however, Christie Burke (Ascension) is alone as the wife and mother, Mary. This movie would not have worked without either of the two, and Christie Burke definitely delivers!
Impressive feature debut
Still/Born was directed by first-time feature film director, Brandon Christensen. Previously, Brandon Christensen has made several short films, so it’s not as if he’s a total newcomer. And good short film directors do make damn fine feature horror directors. Just look at David F. Sandberg of Lights Out and Annabelle: Creation.
Brandon Christensen also co-wrote the script for Still/Born with Colin Minihan. Not a bad writer for horror, since Colin Minihan co-created the Grave Encounters franchise. Also, he directed and co-wrote It Stains the Sands Red, which won the Midnight Extreme Award at Sitges in 2016.
Still/Born has moments of both horror and supernatural thriller, but more than anything, it just grabs hold of you and does not let go!
Still/Born will be out in theaters and On Demand February 9, 2018.
Director: Brandon Christensen
Writers: Brandon Christensen, Colin Minihan
Cast: Christie Burke, Jesse Moss, Rebecca Olson, Sheila McCarthy, Dylan Playfair, Sean Rogerson, Michael Ironside
Mary, a new mother, gives birth to twins, but only one of them is alive. While taking care of her living child, Adam, she suspects that something, a supernatural entity, has chosen him and will stop at nothing to take him from her.