Friday, April 29, 2011

Black Death (2010)

Creepy and unsettling little film almost remained unreleased in the US by managed to pick up a distributor after screening at Lincoln Center's Scary Movies last October.

The film takes place in 1342. The plague is ravaging the country. Osmund, a novice monk is carrying on an affair with a girl from the town. He sends her into the far off marshes in the hopes that she will remain safe from disease. Ulrich, played by Sean Bean, arrives at the monastery looking for some one to guide him into the marshes to find a town that is untouched by the ravages of the plague. Osmund jumps at the chance and soon he's off on a dark adventure, which he soon finds has an ominous purpose. The village in question is run by a necromancer who is in the sway of a demon. What happens on the way and once there is the tale.

The mood of this film is such that it makes your skin crawl. the world is dark and dank and deadly. People are far from nice and it feels as if the world is going to end. If the film reminds one of several recent films (Valhalla Rising, Apocalypse Now and The Sauna among them) the film manages to stake it's own territory with great characters, a great feel and a few twists of its own. In all honesty the final portion of the film is a wonderful downer of an ending and makes you wonder what the title actually refers to.

I really liked this film a great deal. It's the sort of film that really hung with me for hours after seeing it. Its the sort of film that made me feel something. It's so nice to see a recent vintage horror film that actually hangs with with you and makes you feel dread.

Currently out on DVD and on Pay Per View

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