Family secrets come back to haunt in Daniela Carvalho and Ale McHaddo’s Deep Hatred. A good lesson we can all learn after viewing: Find better, collaborative ways to solve your differences that don’t involve drowning. Another good lesson: Don’t throw your trash in the lake. R-e-c-y-c-l-e.
Deep Hatred begins when Cindy (Sara Drust) returns to her family home to settle her deceased father’s estate. Accompanied by her boyfriend Mark (Jeremy Sless), her childhood friend Nathan (Evan Judson), and his girlfriend Jennifer (Marcella Marques), the group intends to use the stay as a nice escape from reality. The friends arrive to find an old house filled with memories and the occasional nosy neighbor. The home hides more history within its walls than Cindy reveals, as the property actually held a commune notorious for some shady happenings. The relaxation quickly deteriorates into fear and paranoia as paranormal activity descends upon the old complex. The sins of Cindy’s father are visited upon the group, who must uncover the truth to escape with their lives.
“When things do begin to get creepy, the filmmakers drop some well-crafted creature and makeup designs”
Deep Hatred contains several of the necessary ingredients that concoct a good horror movie. A creepy score is a good place to start. Music production company Bandeira8 delivers a wonderfully mysterious piano and orchestra piece that succeeds in setting the tone of the film early. This is paired with drone shots of a beautifully lush countryside, an early hint that the nature visuals throughout the film will catch your eye. A tip of the cap is in order for cinematographer Gege Portioli for making the most out of the environment, making what was most definitely a very confined shoot feel spacious.
When things do begin to get creepy, the filmmakers drop some well-crafted creature and makeup designs. A look not unlike the Scarecrow from Batman Begins, the “dark family secret” sneaks up on the group of friends when they’re at their most vulnerable. In particular, the makeup work on the victims of the spirit is very well done. Simple but spine-tingling.
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The tale of “next of kin paying for old family secrets” is no stranger to the horror scene, but I’m not one to complain about seeing similar stories as long as the results are well done. The story within Deep Hatred isn’t incredibly intricate or investing for viewers, but this isn’t a shocking revelation as the runtime of the film is brisk, very well under 1 1/2 hours. Some time is spent on turning the dense countryside compound into an eerie relic of an old religious commune. Described as scarecrows made for scaring away spirits instead of birds, these Blair Witch-esque stick-and-cloth creations litter the area, a nice touch and a clear sign that it’s probably time to get out of there. Of course, no cult is complete without a creepy handmade doll, which serves as the real troublemaker when Mark disposes of it in the one place he definitely shouldn’t. YOU HAD ONE JOB MARK.
When the paranormal action starts, the film certainly shines it’s brightest, both in performances and effects. Unfortunately, the lead-up to the ghost party is a bit of a slog to get through, despite the short run-time. After the creepy country fog clears, Deep Hatred may be a little too bare-bones in plot for the seasoned horror fan to invest in. That said, there are certainly professional filmmakers behind the camera who know how to create a spooky atmosphere.
“Deep Hatred may be a little too bare-bones in plot for the seasoned horror fan to invest in [but creates] a spooky atmosphere.”
You can catchDeep Hatred digitally and on VOD March 22, 2022. Want to share your thoughts on the film or horror in general? Head on over to Nightmare on Film Street’s Twitter and Facebook pages, and jump in on the discussion on our official Discord.
When the paranormal action starts, the film certainly shines it's brightest, both in performances and effects. Unfortunately, the lead-up to the ghost party is a bit of a slog to get through, despite the short run-time. After the creepy country fog clears, Deep Hatred may be a little too bare-bones in plot for the seasoned horror fan to invest in. That said, there are certainly professional filmmakers behind the camera who know how to create a spooky atmosphere.