I hate religion more than your average person, but even I was dissatisfied with the way that faith was twisted in this film, or perhaps, more specifically, how the cult horror genre and real life cult history were manipulated in this story to form something stupid rather than evocative. Catholicism vs cultism, sin vs guilt, looking back vs looking forward; there are very obvious lessons here, but they’re far TOO obvious, almost to the point of embarrassment. The plot of this movie is weak from beginning to end, and audiences will keep waiting for the moment something special is going to happen until the final credits roll, because that moment never comes.
Richard and Laura are separated, leaving two kids, Aidan and Mia, in the middle. When tragedy strikes, the family begins to break apart, and Richard has a new woman in his life, which makes it difficult for the children to come to terms with what has happened. Grace is a lovely young girl, but she & Richard have an age difference, Aidan & Mia don’t want a new mother, and it’s all such a messy situation. To make things more bizarre, Grace is the victim of a cult that Richard has been researching, and has trauma of her own, which rears its ugly head when the entire clan heads to a lodge for a Christmas retreat, and a strange evil appears, to make things even worse.
Yes it’s from the directors of Goodnight Mommy, but The Lodge is much more Hereditary combined with It Comes At Night, but with a Hold the Dark nothingness that makes it almost senseless, and definitely pointless to watch. It’s an amateurish attempt at a horror sub-genre that audiences have only recently really begun to latch onto, and it copies from that formula far too closely, failing to become something original or interesting. It’s slow, it’s brooding, it’s dark, which aren’t bad of themselves, but they are when not paired with shocking, fascinating, or introspective. The Lodge is just dull, and in the end the plot is duller, because you realize at some point that there’s not going to be anything wonderful coming your way any time soon, despite the solid stars that are talented enough, in theory, to make the story work. The film finds itself floundering in metaphor, but not cleverly, instead tripping over its own feet on the way to a climax that’s not climactic, and to a resolution that simply isn’t clever.
My rating: ☆ ☆