The Borderlands

The Borderlands

A team sent by the Vatican to investigate a miraculous claim at an English country church discover there’s far more beneath the the strange phenomena than they had imagined.

This is a “found footage” film, so lots of hand-held, head-mounted, herky-jerky scenes, not for the weak-of-stomach. The main characters–Gray, a secular (“I believe some things”) AV expert; Deacon, a gruff priest who may be a heretic and may also be a drunk; and Mark, the by-the-book leader of the team–have compelling chemistry and rich characterization, which is key to a good horror movie; you can’t help but like them, even the stick-up-his-ass Mark, and you don’t want terrible things to happen to them. The priest at the church, Father Crellick, is believable as both a misguided hoaxer and an innocent who has stumbled upon a terrible evil he cannot comprehend. The introduction of a mysterious Italian priest near the end was a bit much, but fit within the general “there are things the Catholic Church keeps hidden” vibe of the film.

A few loose ends were never tied up, particularly the animosity the villagers show to the team of investigator–are they in league with the evil at the church? Are their sympathies with Crellick? But the ending is satisfying (if at first terrifyingly claustrophobic and then Lovecraftian in its horror). All around an awesome and scary movie.