True-crime writer Ellison Oswalt moves himself and his family into a house where a horrific crime took place earlier, but his family doesn't know. He is trying to find out more about the crime so he can write a new book about it to help his flailing career. He uses some "snuff" film footage he finds in the house to help in his research, but he soon finds more than he bargained for. There is a figure in each of the films, but who or what is it? As a result, his family start to suffer (as does he), and things take a turn for the worse. Will they survive?
|nudity||1/10 A woman wears shorts that reveal most of her legs to the thigh, with a tank top revealing nipples that are visible through the fabric.|
|violence||8/10 The violence is more disturbing than graphic. Most of the actual deaths are off screen and left to the viewers imagination The film opens with full-screen Super 8 footage and we see a family of four standing under a tree with bags over their heads and nooses around their necks: each person is lifted by the nooses and strangled until dead when a large limb on the other side of the tree is sawed off; we see this scene several times and a demonic face with black-triangle eyes and yellowed peeling skin appears. We see the throats of a man, a woman and a boy being slit from ear to ear by a large knife, with substantial blood. A girl carrying an axe and a camera begins to film the grisly murders of her father, mother and brother; the camera cuts to the hallway where we see a lot of blood on the walls and floor, with pictures painted in blood of unicorns, cats, dogs and cult symbols and the girl walks down the hall with blood all over her, and especially hands and bare feet, and she draws a cartoon of the bodies of the family cut into thirds. A man watches films that he found in his attic and sees families being murdered in various ways, including having their throats slit in bed, bound and gagged and burned with gasoline in a car closed up with chains, drowned when bound and gagged to chaise lounges pulled with ropes into their pool, and by hanging; a lawnmower is shown about to run over a young boy lying on the ground and the camera cuts away as the man watching runs out of the room in horror. We see photos of a man, woman and two children, all dead, and with rope burns around their throats. A small girl is shown swinging from the feet of a hanging man. A man falls through a weak spot in his attic floor and the camera cuts to an EMT in the kitchen, wrapping the man's left calf with bandages (we see a little blood). A man sees glowing green liquid in his coffee and passes out, foaming at the mouth (please see the Substance Use category for more details); when he wakes up, he finds himself and his wife and son bound and gagged. A man argues briefly with a sheriff twice and argues with his wife several times, escalating shouting and cursing until it's very loud. A woman argues with her son and her daughter in different scenes, screaming at them for drawing morbid pictures. We hear of a serial killer and a string of murdered families several times. We hear that a child is missing after a family is murdered. We hear a deputy and a crime researcher discuss a case of murdered families across America and that a serial killer murdered them all from the 1950s to the late 1990s; a college professor says that the murders are part of a cult following initiation that includes blood sacrifice and the cannibalism of children's bodies and souls. A girl paints a dead girl swinging from a tire swing on the hallway wall at home and in her bedroom; she also draws four stick people hanging by nooses from a tree with a demonic face on the tree trunk.|
|profanity||4/10 7 scatological terms, 6 mild obscenities, 1 religious profanity and 7 religious exclamations. Stereotypical references to families, children, zombies, authors, law enforcement officers, college professors, cult researchers and serial killers. Name-calling (crazy, moron, sick, waste of time and circus.)|
|alcohol||2/10 A man drinks a bottle of beer with dinner. In several other scenes a man drinks a glass of whiskey several times when he is in his home office and once from the whiskey bottle. A man drinks a cup of coffee that contains a neon green liquid and collapses while foaming at the mouth. A deputy sheriff tells a man that the man may be imagining horrors because of stress and drinking after moving to a new home.|
|frightening||The movie is intense and frightening throughout, especially the murder tapes and the ending. MPAA/USA - Rated R for disturbing violent images and some terror. BBFC/UK - Rated 15 (strong violence, horror).|