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Twisted Minds - Underground Reviews

onsdag 18 april 2018

SINISTRE (1996)

Directed by: Ronnie Sortor
Written by: Ronnie Sortor, Todd Reynolds
Stars:  Steve Kelly, Daniel Skinner, J. Gregory Dollarhide... read more

Country: USA
Style: Extreme
Runtime: 1h 13min
DATE: 2018-04-18 | WRITER: RICHARD TAYLOR SCREENSHOTS:

It's exciting when you stumble upon an unknown slice of spectacular indie horror like 'Sinistre' and even better when its re-released to display its full potential. Originally released in 1996 and revised, re-edited, remastered, restored and re-scored for 2017 all fans of bad ass indie horror/gore need to get their greasy mitts on this low budget epic 90's excursion into atmospheric terror. Sinistre has this gritty quality to it like none other and despite its shortcomings it manages to deliver a solid story with noteworthy performances, a dark brooding feeling and some nasty visuals and juicy make up effects.

Director Ronnie Sortor made Sinistre and another film titled 'Ravage' which was released by Sub Rosa Studios back in the day of no nonsense low budget punch you in the guts horror. You can now find Sortor lending his talent of producing/editing to film maker Phil Stevens on movies such as Flowers/Lung II and you can find the music of Mark Kueffner on there as well. Kueffner brings a highly effective music score to Sinistre, another element which just elevates the quality of Sinistre all that higher.

After watching this it's a damn shame Sortor has hung up the directing gig because this movie really impressed the hell out of me. A movie that transcends its budget, is intelligent and still brings on the red stuff in buckets. I was surprised by the caliber of acting in this one by the group of unknowns, they are convincing especially the lead Simon played by Steve Kelly and since it was the 90's I can forgive his mullet hairstyle. Sinistre really uses its creepy haunted house location to its fullest potential and delivers some great sequences including one with an undead guy roaming around trying to find his missing arm, something chilling and amusing at the same time.

The make up effects in this are plentiful and splash the gore around in buckets to boot as we are given everything from over the top bloody bullet hits to a menacing ghost-like axe wielding maniac who inhabits the dilapidated house and has a penchant for hacking apart unfortunate victims with a splatter fueled rage. On top of all this gory goodness we also get these red demon eyed monsters with claws that look like the offspring of Dr. Freudestein from Lucio Fulci's 'House By The Cemetery' (1981) who feast on hapless victims.

Sinistre has a basic story line but fortunately it manages to steer clear of most cliches even if its setting is a creepy old house we are spared any teenagers or adults playing teenagers, casual sex killings and the premise of a party. The movie opens with three men who have just pulled off a robbery with mixed results. Two of the men are mortally wounded but they managed to get the money and are headed to an isolated location to wait for another accomplice who was in on the heist. Unfortunately for them this house is filled with evil and will torment, kill and torture them to the utter limit of their sub-conscious. The movie makes a statement about inner demons, past torments and the struggle within ourselves.

This one comes highly recommended, it's a horror gem that definitely needs lots of recognition for what it accomplishes. Great performances, music, effects and atmosphere make it a winner and a wicked 90's throwback which should be discovered again by the masses. Many thanks to Ronnie Sortor for the pleasure of watching this one, it was a nice surprise. Note that this version of Sinistre also features a cool short Sortor did in 1981 called 'Abomination'.


My rating: 4 out of 5









MORE DETAILS:

Produced by: Ronnie Sortor, Todd Reynolds
Cinematography by: Ronnie Sortor
Editing by: Ronnie Sortor
Special Effects by: Mike Strain Jr. and Fantasy Creation EFX
Music by: Mark Kueffner
Language: English
Color: Color

Distributor: Borderline Cinema



RICHARD TAYLOR:

Owner of and writer for Twisted Minds. Combined his love for underground films, music and comics with writing in the 90's. Started tape trading the good stuff around that time when originals of Italian classics by Fulci, Argento, Deodato, Castellari and Margheriti were hard to find. Then came German gore by Ittenbach and Schnaas, Mondo movies and Japanese gore such as Guinea Pig and Men Behind The Sun. Written for Violent Maniacs Cage, Mortados Pages Of Filth, ZFE Films With Attitude, Severed Cinema, Goregasmic Cinema, Pophorror & Extreme Horror Cinema.
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