SPOILER WARNING- you have been made aware.
This movie was much scarier than I expected it to be! A heads-up- there is blood and gore, scary creatures, lots of jump scares, and Nicholas Cage. However, the movie’s gorgeous colors and scenery almost made up for the fact that I was covering my eyes in fear and wincing at gross things for half of the second hour of the movie.
The movie is set in a gorgeous forest, in an old house, and at the beginning of the movie, we got to see the landscape, as well as the large, charming old house they live in. One thing I think was missing from the movie was that they did not do enough set-up of the family dynamic. I felt like the people were just actors living in the same house, rather than a family that cared for each other. This often made the stakes not feel as high for me when someone was in danger, or hurt, etc. I think if the family’s bonds had been established more at the beginning, I would have been more invested in the characters’ relationships and their interactions.
I like how the meteorite affected each person/animal in the family differently, but I also thought that made some of its effects somewhat confusing. For example, the first time the dad switches into the angrier version of himself, I was unsure of whether he was just having an outburst, or if he really was being possessed. But I did really like that none of them believed each other that something was going on because they all had different experiences of strange-ness.
My favorite part for sure was the usage of colors, which was the indicator that the meteorite’s evil was present. I like how it was used both very brazenly, like when the colors came shooting out of the well, but I also liked how it could be very subtle too, like when you saw little shards of it in the ice of a drink. I also liked how the color was limited to very bright blues, purples and pinks, because I think it made it look much more cohesive. It was cool how at the end everything was white, as though the evil from the meteorite had pulled all the color out of the world. It was also impactful at the very end, when the hydrologist, Ward, was standing on the dam. The colors were much more dark and sort of orangey-red, which was a huge contrast to the colors that had been all over the farm only 5 minutes earlier in the movie.
I noticed a couple of inconsistencies with the movie, or things that I think should have been better explained or elaborated. One of the big ones was the significance of the bug that came out of the meteorite. I never saw it touch anyone, or anything, it just flew around in a couple of scenes. However if it was supposed to be the catalyst of all of the destruction, I didn’t quite get that, because a bunch of the mishaps happened before we even saw it hatch. I also was confused a bit on the role of the old man in the woods. I understand that he was listening to the aliens in the ground, but his role seemed like it was added just for that, and he seemed so 2-D as a character. Also, when they went to find him and heard the tapes rolling, it was somewhat indiscernible what was being said, so that did not have as much as an impact as I think it should have.
Overall I thought it was a good movie for its genre. I wonder if the things that were kind of left hanging were because of H.P. Lovecraft’s original story that this was based on, or if it was the fault of the movie producers. Either way, I understand that a horror movie is more focused on the horror part than the storyline, and they definitely got the horrifying part right. There were many scenes where I needed to look away because the deformities that the meteorite caused were absolutely just plain gross, or something was very bloody. I did not expect this movie to be as scary as it was, so I don’t have much to comment on in that respect, as I have little experience with horror movies. Plus I was mostly covering my eyes during those parts. However, I did enjoy the mystery and the build-up, and even though I do not like horror, I could definitely appreciate some of the more artistic elements of the movie.