Not Rated | 1h 25min | Horror, Thriller | 1 September 2017 (USA)
Synopsis: In a potent blend of the horror, thriller and home-invasion genres, an estranged family attempts to save their son from a murderous cult in the terrifying psychological thriller Jackals. Opening in select theaters and On Demand September 1st, 2017 from Scream Factory Films, Jackals is a shocking and suspenseful saga from director Kevin Greutert (Saw 3D, Visions) and producer Tommy Alastra (Sunset Strip).
Review: Fans of intense, nail biting, thrillers will love the new film, JACKALS. There is no doubt that it will have you squirming on the edge of your seat; mainly due to the subtle, foreboding nature of the horror. It reminded me a lot of 2008’s THE STRANGERS. There is something extra terrifying about killers who are in no hurry. The quiet, ominous movement of the “bad guys” in this one elevate the skin crawling tone.
Andrew (Johnathon Schaech) and Kathy (Deborah Kara Unger) Powell are trying to help save their son Justin (Ben Sullivan) from a powerful cult by kidnapping him and staging an intervention at a remote cabin. But when members of the cult show up to reclaim one of their own it becomes a brutal face off which the family may not survive.
The story is not a simple one and as it progresses you start to see small fractures in the family that threaten to unravel everyone. Justin wants no part of his family as he verbally and physically assaults them as they try and reason with him. You feel for the parents who will do anything to have their son back. Part of you may argue with the lengths they go to but as a parent I could almost understand it. That emotional element makes the tension even greater.
When the Jackals show up the movie takes a very sinister turn into a nightmare. The way the cult is styled and directed is perfect. They move very slowly and say little. But they are numerous and largely outnumber those inside the cabin. Anyone who as ever camped in a remote area and thought they saw or heard someone outside will relate to the terror. Only this one takes it to the next level.
JACKALS is rated R for language and graphic violence and certainly an adult film. True horror fans will appreciate the lengths that director Kevin Greutert went to bring Jared Rivet’s script to life. The acting too is believable and it was fun seeing Schaech in this type of film. I give it 3.5 out of 5 swing sets. A great addition to the cult genre.