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Reviews
STAR RATINGS EXPLAINED
Unmissable 5 Stars
Excellent 4 Stars
Good 3 Stars
Poor 2 Stars
Tragic 1 Star

FILM DETAILS
Certificate
15
Cast
Ethan Hawke
Vincent D'Onofrio
Juliet Rylance.
Directors
Scott Derrickson.
Screenwriters
Scott Derrickson.
Running Time
110 minutes

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Sinister
Horrors in the attic


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Plot
A cynical hack writer moves his family to a house with a dark history, and is forced to face up to the supernatural.


Review
Sinister
Crime writer Ellison (Ethan Hawke) moves into a house to research a book about a mass hanging, without telling his wife (Juliet Rylance) or children that they’re living in a crime scene. Home movies found in the attic suggest a serial killer — or supernatural force — is responsible for the atrocities. Sinister see-saws between crime mystery and spooky stuff, as the slightly unhinged hero gets deeper into a puzzle that poses a threat to him and his family. Well-acted, reasonably paced and intriguing, this mid-list shocker from writer-director Scott Derrickson is nothing new, but delivers enough subtle creeps to get by.


Verdict
Derrickson bounces back from his insipid redo of The Day The Earth Stood Still with an effective chiller that's got a skeleton or two in its closet.


Reviewed by Kim Newman


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Your Reviews

Average user rating for Sinister
Empire Star Rating

Give yourself over to it and it's a fun, tension filled ride. The first half was most certainly stronger than the second and the ending was a bit of a let down, but it kept us on the edge of our seats pretty much throughout. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by Turd Ferguson at 14:43, 22 February 2013 | Report This Post


damn, wish I saw this at the cinema

it's good, and has enough in the locker to offer something new. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by Normal Control at 18:55, 16 February 2013 | Report This Post


tp://www.imdb.com/title/tt1922777/]Sinisterhe story (man, a writer who writes book about old murdercases and investigates them, movies with his family to a creepy house) sound really cliché. And it is. On forehand I didn`t expect that I`d find this movie so creepy. So that`s a positive surprise. The atmosphere is very creepy, created by having the scary moments (of course) take place only in the dark, and that get`s amped up towards the end. The little details, the things that happen and yo... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by TheGodfather at 21:08, 25 November 2012 | Report This Post


I don't think I've seen a worse performance in a...

...mainstream movie. Juliet Rylance is astonishingly bad. It's a bit depressing to see an actor of Hawke's calibre in such a third rate film. Did he owe somebody a favour? ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by Cameron1975Williams at 00:36, 20 November 2012 | Report This Post


RE: Disturbing rather than scary

Watched this movie last month and i love this movie. This movie is very scary, but interesting movie. I love the story of this movie. ... More

Posted by Jamesdawn at 09:52, 31 October 2012 | Report This Post


RE: Disturbing rather than scary

I thought it was pretty scary! It made me and the audience jump a few times that's for sure. Mind you I didn't have a clue what it was about and went in against my will! ... More

Posted by Private Hudson at 00:53, 24 October 2012 | Report This Post


RE: Disturbing rather than scary

It started well and did have a couple of creepy moments, however, halfway through, you could see the end coming a mile off and it just became another cliched ' lost tape ' movie after that. Plus, the kids just spoilt it. Nothing special.......move on please...... ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by Happy Shrapnel at 12:32, 22 October 2012 | Report This Post


RE: Disturbing rather than scary

Well this was a nice surprise a well made horror film,that is not only scary,but has performances that are believable and a story that is intriguing and moving.Why i was surprised by this is mainly because A;i did not see the trailer,B;i've read no reviews except the Dr's short one,C;idid not realize till the credits rolled at the end,who directed this great chiller.Well this is only the second film i've seen of  director Scott Derrickson,who is great at focusing on plot developm... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by evil bill at 19:46, 17 October 2012 | Report This Post


Disturbing rather than scary

It's been a while since I saw a really scary movie, and while I wasn't jumping out of my seat at every jolt the director pushed the audience's way, I was disturbed my the gruesome murders. I thought the story was great, Hawke's was very good and I loved the officer who tries to join forces with Hawke to solve the riddle. My only criticism was the pace of the film as it could've have been slightly shorter but I still thinks its a good movie. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by Nefruaten at 18:37, 16 October 2012 | Report This Post


It wasn't even remotely scary in any way, shape or form. The one star is purely for Ethan Hawke who is ok in it. And how the hell did Rylance get the role? She was bloody awful. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by chris wootton at 14:40, 15 October 2012 | Report This Post


RE: Scares are key...

Watched r e weekend and loved every minute of it. The audience was pretty busy and were jumping throughout. If you like horror films - especially now it's near Halloweeny - then I'd highly recommend this one. It's awesome! ] ... More

Posted by filmfan90 at 09:39, 15 October 2012 | Report This Post


Scares are key...

This film may be slightly repetitive but the scares is what keeps the film so well balanced; there effective and frequent and if it wasnt for the fresh scares this film provides it would be another plane old ghost film. Luckily its not. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by jackcarlin18 at 15:58, 13 October 2012 | Report This Post


Scares are key...

This film may be slightly repetitive but the scares is what keeps the film so well balanced; there effective and frequent and if it wasnt for the fresh scares this film provides it would be another plane old ghost film. Luckily its not. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by jackcarlin18 at 15:58, 13 October 2012 | Report This Post


Sleep inducing

Tedious to begin with, shock-less throughout and a predictable ending. AVOID. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by sephiroth7 at 09:40, 13 October 2012 | Report This Post


RE: IT'S A SIN......

It's alright. Relies mostly on jump scares rather than genuine creepyness, and there really isn't any calling for more "Ghostly Kiddy" horror movies, but the story was interesting. SPOILERS Saying that, knowing nothing about this film when I went in, I enjoyed it a lot more when I thought it was going to be a crime thriller/horror rather than dealing with the supernatural. That opening shot was an incredibly way to start a film, and seemed like a really inven... More

Posted by Hood_Man at 20:33, 12 October 2012 | Report This Post


IT'S A SIN......

Scariest movie ever??? HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA. What’s really scary is how all the mainstream critics seem to have been taken in by a lazy director of a clichéd script which brings absolutely nothing new to the table. A whole hour into this garbage and I was staring at my watch, hoping that it would all come to a swift end and of course by then you slowly start to realise there’s nothing in this film that hasn’t already been done before. And it’s a shame that the commi... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by ROTGUT at 18:44, 12 October 2012 | Report This Post


IT'S A SIN......

Scariest movie ever??? HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA. What’s really scary is how all the mainstream critics seem to have been taken in by a lazy director of a clichéd script which brings absolutely nothing new to the table. A whole hour into this garbage and I was staring at my watch, hoping that it would all come to a swift end and of course by then you slowly start to realise there’s nothing in this film that hasn’t already been done before. And it’s a shame that the commi... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by ROTGUT at 18:44, 12 October 2012 | Report This Post


I really really wanted to like this...

But I didn't. While the tapes are definitely disturbing, the moment everything is explained toward the end the fear factor vanishes, and the climax was sorely underwhelming. A lot of this wan't helped by the fact the marketing gave away ALL the major scares and even the nature of Bagul itself. So every scare was expected. Speaking of scares, the jump scenes were really cheap, forced and unnecessary. And a plot point involving the son sleep walking is brought up and instantly forgotten after th... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by alsybroth at 16:06, 09 October 2012 | Report This Post


Great film

It would almost work better without all the supernatural stuff. The plot of the true crime writer discovering those super creepy tapes is scary enough. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by tysmuse at 23:57, 07 October 2012 | Report This Post


RE: Well Acted??

I was looking forward to this, hoping it would have a few solid chills. Unfortunately I have had some bowel movements that were scarier that this film. Poor. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by simonmckergan1 at 21:57, 07 October 2012 | Report This Post


Well Acted??

Well acted?! Couldn't disagree more. The drama is forced and stunted by poor writing. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by btaylor25 at 18:59, 07 October 2012 | Report This Post


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