The Turning is a horror film directed by Floria Sigismondi. The plot sees young governess Kate (Mackenzie Davis), arrive at an old country house to begin teaching a young girl, however as she stays on things quickly become far more sinister.
So, this film clearly is trying to mimic the style of classic ghost story/ haunted house horror films of past generations, or more recently something like Del Toro’s Crimson Peak, which is a gothic romance. Where those films usually go for an understated approach, this film hit you in the face, with all the subtly of an explosion.
It fails at what it tries to do in an almost spectacular fashion, it does not have an atmosphere or creepiness, rather it has jump scares that it crams in every ten minutes, so you don’t get bored, which just feel cheap and jarring tonally.
This film feels that by being oppressive and unpleasant to watch that that makes it scary, or unsettling, it doesn’t. The film uses violence in a very vulgar way, often going to a tasteless extreme which makes Eli’s Roth’s torture porn look in good taste. We see the kid from Stranger Things stomp a fish to death, so the film can prove how edgy and dark it is and it just feels very needless. Likewise it uses rape, or the threat of it, as a plot device especially towards the later stages of the film where Davis’s character seem on the verge of being assaulted near constantly, again why? Using the threat of rape to build tension feels, icky, it feels cheap and you really get that sense as you watch it.
Finally, whoever is Finn Wolfhard’s agent should be fired as he was entirely wrong for this film. He did not play the unhinged twisted character well, instead he came off more a brooding spoiled little kid who is having a tantrum, he was in no way threatening throughout the film and every time the film went that way I rolled my eyes. Stunt casting if ever I saw it, tapping into to that sweet sweet Stranger Things crowd.
Overall, vulgar and needless if it wasn’t for Davis I would give this film a 0
Davis is trying, she is too good for this film.
Using rape as a plot device
Showing needless violence to prove how edgy and dark the film is
A badly miscast Finn Wolfhard
Some of the worst dialogue I have ever heard
Reviewed by Luke