Some people may be trying to escape reality this weekend, if only for a little while.
Film critic Josh Bell may have the movies to do it.
Halloween is over, but the horror movies keep coming, and my first pick this week is one of the best horror movies of the year. Now playing in select theaters and available for video on demand rental, The Dark and the Wicked is a return to form for filmmaker Bryan Bertino. Like his brilliant 2008 home invasion movie The Strangers, The Dark and the Wicked is a nihilistic story about an isolated family under siege from terrifying forces. It's never quite explained what sort of entity may be possessing the elderly father of a pair of siblings played by Marin Ireland and Michael Abbott Jr., who return to the family farm to care for him. The film lays out the horrors slowly and methodically, making them inescapable for the main characters. The images are often gruesome, and the director doesn't let the audience look away. The Dark and the Wicked is now playing at the Galaxy Cannery and on VOD.
Also available for video on demand rental is the psychological thriller Kindred, starring Tamara Lawrance as a pregnant woman essentially held hostage by her late boyfriend's rich, powerful family. Fiona Shaw from Killing Eve makes for a fantastic villain as the domineering grandmother-to-be, plainly evil but also outwardly rational much of the time. The filmmakers effectively build the tension as the main character's situation grows increasingly hopeless, but it's a bit frustrating to watch her keep giving this obviously sinister family the benefit of the doubt. But Tamara Lawrance holds the movie together, right up to the bleak ending. That's Kindred, now on VOD.