Haunts

August 13, 2017 at 6:37 pm (5 Heads, Haunts) (, , , , )

Haunts – 1977 – United States

Haunts takes place in a small mountain town where there is nothing to do but gossip, go to church, and drive around drunk. A maniac in a ski mask starts raping women and stabbing them with scissors. Ingrid is a Swedish woman who lives on an isolated farm. She believes the maniac has a vendetta against her and suspects every man in town at one point or another. As the plot progresses, evidence suggests that Ingrid might be delusional. She has traumatic childhood memories of being sexually abused and witnessing the death of her mother. In the present day, many of the characters she interacts with might be figments of her imagination. As the maniac closes in on Ingrid, it becomes less and less clear if there is a maniac at all. By the film’s ending, fantasy and reality have been thoroughly blended and nothing makes much sense.

At first, Haunts seems like a generic slasher film. As it progresses, the plot becomes more mysterious and less coherent, but at least it’s unpredictable. Although Haunts’ languid pacing lacks tension, the film has a spooky low-key atmosphere that is kind of interesting.

Rating: 5/10 Shrunken Heads. In one scene, Ingrid milks a goat while recalling her childhood of sexual abuse. It’s hard to articulate exactly why, but this grosses me out.

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