Film Reviews Horror Reviews Thriller Reviews

Familiar Haunt THE CELLAR Misses the Mark

Shortly after moving into an old estate, Keira’s teenage daughter goes missing while in the cellar. Despite signs pointing to her being a runaway, Keira chooses to investigate the house’s history and finds a disturbing link to the occult. Starring Elisha Cuthbert and Eoin Macken, The Cellar feels like a familiar film with potential if it had only been more purposeful.

It feels a little too close to the generic supernatural horror films of the early aughts when uninspired schlock hit our screens one after the other. The color grading is the most obvious, as it ages the movie into an earlier decade. And to date the film further, it contains the tired trope of the husband not believing the wife, which doesn’t even heighten any conflict, at the least.

I appreciated that it tries to weave together a complex story with intriguing mythology, but the execution does nothing to help elevate that context. The story feels dry with performances that don’t feel engaging whatsoever. Perhaps if there had been more passion and realism in character motives, the narrative could have felt more impactful. But overall, The Cellar feels redundant for anyone who lived through the era of blue-toned 2000s horror.

The Cellar releases on Shudder on April 15, 2022

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