Dark August (1976)
January 9, 2022 8:39 AM - Subscribe

A man accidentally runs down a young girl and has a curse placed on him by the girl's father, an occultist. He goes to a spiritualist for help in fighting the curse.

Another folk horror currently streaming in the US on Shudder.
posted by DirtyOldTown (2 comments total)
This isn't the greatest film, but it's different enough than other folk horror that I can see why it stands out.

Not all folk horror is UK or period set, obviously. But by being set in (then) contemporary times in the US with a very NYC Italian-American protagonist, it feels like it starts off on a different foot entirely.

Sal seems to have had a bad marriage in NYC. He's running away to rural upstate with his new girlfriend to escape the guilt, to escape constant talk of his "responsibilities." Shortly after arriving, he accidentally kills a young girl who runs out in front of his car. And now, even more than before, his life is about guilt and responsibilities that haunt him.

This city guy can move to the country, get a Jeep, buy all the denim shirts he wants (seriously: so many denim shirts), but he cannot escape responsibility and guilt. And he will never belong in the country.

Kim Hunter is a nice treat here. She's always good.

Is this great? Oh, no. It's a two and a half stars out of five kinda deal. But it's interesting, if you're doing a kind of survey of folk horror, as roughly half the horror nerds I know are doing, thanks to Shudder's curated folk horror collection and the new Kier-La Janisse doc/Severin box set.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 9:53 AM on January 9, 2022

The establishing shots in this movie are so gorgeous that if it was just 90 minutes of those, I would probably like it a little better than I do as a narrative feature.
posted by tomorrowromance at 10:11 AM on January 10, 2022

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