Terrified: an obscure Halloween delight

Breihan Dryden, A&E Writer

So, this was not the film that I was originally going to review this week, but holy hell, what a doozy it is. While Satan’s Slaves will get its time to shine in the near future, I just had to talk about this Argentinian creepfest. Currently streaming on Shudder (hands down the best streaming site besides Amazon Prime, which you can subscribe to Shudder through) Terrified tells the tale of three paranormal researchers investigating a neighborhood that has been experiencing some pretty scary stuff. Kids are dying, neighbors are disappearing, and people are hearing voices in their sinks. What exactly is going on? Well, you never really find out and that really plays to the strengths of the scares themselves. You don’t know what’s going on, where it’s going, or how we got here and no one else does, both from an audience perspective and the characters perspective. While you won’t leave this film pondering the meaning of a well thought out ending, the scares that this film produces will be imprinted in your head long after you’ve decided to switch over to bingeing Kitchen Nightmares as a palate cleanser.

Let’s talk about some of those scares, shall we? This movie gets straight to the point within the first ten minutes, showing off its very blunt horror. One of my favorite scenes involved a detective and one of the researchers investigating a son coming home to his mother. Problem is, he’s been dead for the past two days, with the detective even having gone to his funeral and having a previous relationship to him and his mother. Another scene that caught me off guard happens exactly seven minutes into the film. Let me set the scene: A wife has been hearing voices from her sink drain all day saying that they want to kill her. Later on in the night, after both she and her husband have gone to bed, the wife wakes up and decides to go take a shower. After the husband hears sporadic knocking (which he initially mistakes for his neighbors constant remodeling), he notices that it’s coming from the bathroom. I’ll leave it at that, so you can experience what comes next.

I just love it when a film slips under my radar and I just happen to come across it with little to no knowledge of its existence. That’s exactly what happened here. The only thing I knew about this film going into it was a creepy looking screenshot and the promise that it was a no-holds-barred horror film. Not only is it frighteningly intense, but it’s directed well, shot wonderfully, has fantastic sound design, and is performed impeccably. I honestly had no idea that this was the level of horror coming out of Argentina, and now I’m absolutely stoked to see what else I can find.

Terrified done did me a spook, and, if you know me, you would also know that it is very, very hard to get the kind of reaction that this film got out of me. So do yourself a favor and get the free trial of Shudder just so you can experience this, dare I say, terrifying gem. It’s bound to become a Halloween staple and a film that I torture my friends, family, and fiancé within the next two weeks.

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