The Seeding may be the first great horror movie of the year and, yet, it’s a tough recommendation.
Filmmaker Barnaby Clay (SHOT! The Psycho-Spiritual Mantra of Rock) tells a dire and hopeless story about a photographer, Wyndham Stone (Scott Haze of Jurassic World Dominion), who is tricked and trapped in a gigantic pit after attempting to assist a lost child in the desert. Also in the pit is Alina (Kate Lyn Sheil of She Dies Tomorrow), a tattered and disconnected woman who has learned how to live in desolation. Like Stone, the audience receives only brief glimpses of the sadistic kids who howl and mock from above; occasionally climbing down to taunt and torture at close range.
Resembling Hiroshi Teshigahara’s Woman in the Dunes by way of Eli Roth’s “torture porn” sensibilities, The Seeding is a psychological thriller that makes you feel loopy for all the right reasons. Writer/director Clay taps into a twisted sense of despair by stripping away reality and emphasizing survival with splashes of paranoia. Violent scenes are far and few between, which makes the film’s more graphic scenes deliver well-earned shocks. And even though movie goers know very little about Wyndham and Alina, the central performances exude humanistic elements that effortlessly builds a sympathetic bond between them and the audience. Confrontational arguments between the victims that are more focused on the power of their genders are less nuanced, but these conversations help detail further revelations about Alina’s contributions towards Wyndham’s personal hell.
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Addison Wylie: @AddisonWylie