The nerve of these kids today!
Once upon a time, you bring a delightful baby girl into the world. Next thing you know, the ungrateful brat is summoning an evil spirit to cap your ass!
Sullen teen Leah (Nicole Muñoz) butts heads with her flaky mom (Laurie Holden) following the death of their father/husband. Rebellious, angry, and smarting from Mom’s new whip-cracking parenting style, Leah sensibly turns to sorcery to remove the old hag from the picture, so that she’s free to spend more time with her loser friends.
We’re not talking voodoo dolls here. Leah goes full-tilt boogie in raising up the titular malevolent entity, including slicing open her own arm during a frenzied ceremony in the deep, dark words.
Much to her chagrin, all signs point to a successful ritual, and right around the same time Mom starts cutting her some slack, evidence of a demonic presence becomes impossible to ignore.
Canadian writer-director Adam McDonald (Backcountry) gets the most out of his raw materials in Pyewacket, including a tough, multifaceted performance from actress Nicole Muñoz.
It’s a rather stark, unvarnished production that relies on slow-drip tension, spooky woods, and agile cameras to keep us glued to our chairs.
Without gore or a body count, McDonald boldly doubles down on mood and atmosphere till the whole thing blows up—including a mother-daughter relationship that literally goes to hell.