Written and Directed by Jude S. Walko Produced by Dan Campbell Starring Dean Cain, Sam Valentine, Dylan Kellogg, Beatrice Orro and Jude S. Walko
Welcome to Paris! Or, err…south of France? More like a countryside of ancestral castles that invoke urban legends. Regardless, Lucy Bellerose, an American student has come to France to pay respect to her recently deceased uncle. Or, err…great uncle.
Lucy is young, beautiful and loves to take selfies. In typical millennial form, she makes every immediate effort to stop her long car ride from the airport in order to tape herself for online “fans”, documenting her journey across the French landscapes.
Once at the destination, the driver immediately fails to approach the sprawling castle and takes his leave at the edge of the drive port. Red flags spring up as Lucy enters her new estate.
Upon her arrival, she meets the intensely strange and mesmerizing Vicar of Borley. The Vicar, or deputy of a Bishop, questions Lucy’s motives, and barrages her with castle rules and regulations, knowing very well she will break each and every one (it was obvious that the Vicar became the favorite character to watch).
The massive castle containing hidden family secrets, restricted areas and mysteriously concealed rooms, becomes a wonderment of exploration for the young girl as she makes her way into the unknown chambers while (of course)…taping her self-indulgent adventure.
Piecing together ancient writings, local gossip and tales of wealth, Lucy uncovers some buried truths that lay deep within her descendants, and her online obsession suddenly disappears. Changes within her occur and the mood drops into a dark place.
The Incantation is a complicated story of witches, magic, legends, and family sacrifice for immortality. Slowly, Lucy is inducted into peculiar situations between Mary, the chambermaid (terrifically portrayed by the sharp tongued Beatrice Orro), to the local insurance salesman, Abel Baddon (brought to life by the evil side of Dean Cain!). She gets wrapped up in a romance with her great uncle’s gravedigger, P.J. (a rather odd and dopey Dylan Kellogg) who awkwardly goes from local informer to full-on infatuation within the span of 2 days. The connection felt forced and unnecessary.
That said, this is a somewhat slow but interesting concept with a twist. Cliffhangers are always a welcome addition to horror films and kudos toJude S. Walko, who not only pulled off a clever revelation, but managed to portray the unnerving Vicar in the process. Who knew the director/writer was also the featured performance?
Dean Cain never fails to entertain, even when subliminally covering up a sinister side to his persona. Sam Valentine was well cast as the superficial “princess” of the castle, Lucy. It’s a slow burning journey, albeit a unique one.