Sacrifice – Ireland, Germany, USA, 2016 – reviews

 
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Sacrifice-2016

‘Every life has a price.’

Sacrifice is a 2016 Irish-German-American mystery thriller with horror themes written and directed by Peter A. Dowling (Stag Night), based on a novel by S.J. Bolton [Sharon Bolton]. 

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Buy DVD: Amazon.co.uk

Main cast:

Radha Mitchell, Rupert Graves, Ian McElhinney, David Robb, Joanne Crawford, Liam Carney, Declan Conlon, Peter Vollebregt, Rachel Oliva, Lesa Thurman, Conor Mullen, Megan Riordan and Deirdre Monaghan.

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Consultant surgeon Tora Hamilton and her husband Duncan move to the remote Shetland Islands, 100 miles off the north-east coast of Scotland.

Deep in the peat soil around her new home, Tora discovers the body of a young woman with rune marks carved into her skin and a gaping hole where her heart once beat. Ignoring warnings to leave well alone, Tora uncovers terrifying links to a legend that might never have been confined to the pages of the story-books…

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Reviews [click links to read more]:

“Don’t look forward to an avalanche of chills and thrills with this one either – for all intents and purposes, this will definitely appeal to those looking for a decent crime/mystery presentation, but the horror… oh, where has the horror gone?” Dread Central

Sacrifice isn’t a bad film, it’s just not a good one. It lacks the twists and turns needed to really sell the ideas at play, which is a shame as there is certainly a good idea for a movie in there. Perhaps if it had been shot with more flair, or had something else to highlight besides the plodding plot, it could be redeemed.” Tiny Mix Tapes

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” … a unique kind of very bad movie. The spectacle of this misbegotten thriller is not amusing enough to recommend to fans of casual movie cheesiness, but it’s the filmmaking choices that made me laugh out loud. This movie should be taught in film school—just as Hitchcock movies can teach filmmaking, so can their failed imitators provide us with elementary examples of when technique goes horribly wrong.” RogerEbert.com

Sacrifice‘s very design—a car chase, narrow escapes through small passageways, and a guess-who culprit that necessitates no guessing—turns out to be a whimpered bark followed by a toothless bite.” Slant Magazine

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Sacrifice isn’t a bad film, nor is it necessarily boring: the acting is good, there are some good scares and a decent atmosphere. But we’ve been here before, and we’ve seen this story done in more interesting ways. Twitch

“Kind of Shetland the crime drama meets One Born Every Minute meets Dracula meets Vikings. It’s creepy at times – Tora wandering around a hospital at night, alone … or is she? But then it lays it on thicker and thicker to the point that the climax, with Tora on the cliffs at night, with a sacrificial mum and her baby, and a bad dude with a very big dagger, is like a gothic horror movie from about 50 years ago. Fun though…” The Guardian

“Other than that gruesomely scarred and desiccated body, though, there’s not much actual horror in Sacrifice, and the story’s more disturbing implications are sublimated to generic whodunit concerns right through to the end. There are a couple of attempts at surprise reversals in the final act, but even here, any real shock value winds up being sacrificed to disappointingly conventional concerns.” Fangoria

Filming locations:

Manhattan, New York City, New York
County Wicklow and County Dublin, Ireland
Shetland, Scotland

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