The Shrine – Canada, 2010

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‘Once you find it. They won’t let you leave.’

The Shrine is a 2010 Canadian supernatural horror film directed by Jon Knautz (Goddess of Love; Girl HouseJack Brooks: Monster Slayer) from a screenplay co-written with Brendan Moore and Trevor Matthews (Girl House).

A young American backpacker has gone missing in Poland. Three journalists link his disappearance to a remote village infamous for its bizarre cult activity and rumours of human sacrifice and go to investigate…

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Main cast:

Aaron Ashmore (Fear Island; The Thaw), Cindy Sampson (Supernatural; High Plains Invaders; Swamp Devil), Meghan Heffern (American Gothic; The Fog; Insecticidal), and Trevor Matthews (Girl HouseJack Brooks: Monster Slayer).

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Buy: Amazon.co.uk | Amazon.com

Reviews:

“After a rocky start, The Shrine finds its footing and delivers a tense, exciting, wacky conclusion. The final twist is satisfying and does not feel forced in any way. The film is more enjoyable than expected, but could have used a more focused and entertaining beginning. The shrine itself is creepy as hell and the final act is full on madness and possessed mayhem.” Doc Rotten, HorrorNews.net

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“Its hard to throw punches at a film that’s so effortlessly entertaining, despite its inherent flaws and weaknesses. In many ways its these perceived weaknesses that actually elevate it to a higher status. The overacting, the ‘too bright’ colours, the head-scratching plot holes, (build a f*cking fence!!) and the cheesy costume designs all add to its charm.” The Horror Hotel

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“Everything that is wrong here – the dull stock characters, the derivative plotting, Polish folk obviously played by non-Poles and Polish settings obviously not shot in Poland – could have been elevated by some sharp parodic writing and self-aware wit, as if to show that the filmmaker was in on the joke of how well-worn his material is. Instead we get a po-faced, poor imitation of a standard straight-to-video horror flick.” Anton Bitel, Eye for Film

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“There’s a pretty solid crucifixion-style scene, some decent looking rubbery monsters, some solid in-camera no frills jump-scares, and some flat out brutality that redeems this little number by the end of its running time.” Frank Cotton, Horribly Hooched

“Even with its familiar trappings and some occasional bumps in the road, The Shrine is an enjoyable little throwback.” Scott Weinberg, FEAR.net

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The Shrine is a lean, mean tale that recalls the fog shrouded hamlets cursed by horrific unearthly evils which were brought to life by H.P. Lovecraft. It’s plot is original and unique; a rare bird to find in this age of cinematic remakes,  bland re-imaginings, crappy reboots and horrid knockoffs. Check it out!” Bloody Whisper

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Cast and characters:

  • Aaron Ashmore as Marcus
  • Cindy Sampson as Carmen
  • Meghan Heffern as Sara
  • Trevor Matthews as Henryk
  • Vieslav Krystyan as Arkadiusz
  • Laura DeCarteret as Laura Taylor
  • Ben Lewis as Eric Taylor
  • Julia Debowska as Lidia
  • Monica Bugajski as Emilia
  • Stefen Hayes as Aleks
  • Connor Stanhope as Dariusz
  • Philip Craig as Dale

Production company:

Brookstreet Pictures

Filming locations:

Pickering, Toronto and Vaughan, Ontario, Canada

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