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"SINISTER"
(2012) (Ethan Hawke, Juliet Rylance) (R)


Alcohol/Drugs Heavy
Blood/Gross Stuff Heavy
Disrespectful/Bad Attitude Extreme
Frightening/Tense Scenes Extreme
Gun/Weapons Heavy
Imitative Behavior Heavy
Jump Scenes Extreme
Music (Scary/Tense) Extreme
Music (Inappropriate) None
Profanity Heavy
Sex/Nudity Mild
Smoking Minor
Tense Family Scenes Heavy
Topics to Talk About Heavy
Violence Extreme


QUICK TAKE:
Horror: A true-crime novelist gets more than he bargained for when he moves his family into a house where a previous multiple murder occurred and was captured on home movies he discovers.
PLOT:
Ellison Oswalt (ETHAN HAWKE) is a true-crime novelist who hasn't had a bestseller in a decade. Desperate for another hit, he moves his family -- wife Tracy (JULIET RYLANCE), 12-year-old Trevor (MICHAEL HALL D'ADDARIO) and his younger sister, Ashley (CLARE FOLEY) -- to a home where the previous family was hanged, while the youngest child has not been found. He does so without telling the family they're in the home where that occurred, all in hopes of finding information the local authorities -- including the county Sheriff (FRED DALTON THOMPSON) who isn't pleased to see him arrive -- might have missed.

His first clue arrives in the form of a box of old 8mm home movies and a projector he finds in the attic. Showing both the hanging murders at that house but also multiple homicides elsewhere and via other means, Ellison tries to figure out who shot the films, the meaning behind the same symbol seen in some of them, as well as who or what a demonic-looking figure might be that also shows up in them.

With a local Deputy (JAMES RANSONE) doing some investigating work for him on those, Ellison attempts to piece everything together in hopes that his resultant work might rival the success of "In Cold Blood." But as he continues, strange things start occurring in the house at night, eventually resulting in ever-increasing supernatural activity that seemingly soon puts him and his family in danger.

WILL KIDS WANT TO SEE IT?
If they're into horror films featuring supernatural material, they probably will.
WHY THE MPAA RATED IT: R
For disturbing violent images and some terror.


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