The Innocents: Where Is The Line When Showing Animal Abuse On Screen?


Written by Luke Barnes


A group of troubled children develop otherworldly abilities and use their powers for sinister means.

I forget who said it now, but a reviewer of this film that enjoyed it far more than I did said of it something to the extent of ‘finally a film for adults’, no doubt in a jab at the mindless blockbusters many don’t view as true cinema. However, I want to pose the idea that if this often excessive and unpleasant film is true cinema then maybe it isn’t such a good thing.

There are two examples I would like to point to that soured the film for me, both happen fairly early on and it only gets worse from there. The first is when a heavily disabled girl is tortured by our lead, played by Rakel Lenora Fløttum, and the second is when the lead and her friend shove a cat into a sack and then drop it from a height onto the ground. I understand that these elements are to show that the child is twisted and sadistic, but in my mind this is communicated to the audience in a needlessly tasteless way. A defence for this could be that it is a horror film so we can expect sights that sicken and disturb us, however, at least for me this crossed a line.

Animal abuse in film is always hard for me to watch.

Overall, this film was a bit too rich for my personal taste.


The child actors do feel genuinely menacing


The animal abuse

Bad taste

Pacing issues

The plot feels overly familiar

Some meandering subplots   

If you enjoyed this review, then please head over to my Patreon to support me, I offer personalized shoutouts, the ability for you to pick what I review next and full access to my Patreon exclusive game reviews. Check it out!

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s