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The Independent Critic

Writer/Director
Alicia Conway
Starring
Tabitha Morella, Kelly Holden-Bashar
Running Time
9 Mins.
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 "Rite" Review 
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Having played at film festivals as diverse as the Sundance Film Festival and Fangoria's Weekend of Horrors, writer/director Alicia Conway's "Rite" is a disturbingly realistic look at the often perverse role ritual plays in our lives and, in this case, in the life of a young girl (Tabitha Morella).

It is clear from the film's opening scenes, that the young girl has reached a rite of passage in her life. She is the picture of purity and surrounded by what appears to be family and friends, however, it is only casually revealed what type of ritual she will be experiencing. With an ominous musical score from Kays Alatrakchi, "Rite" is seemingly headed into a ritual that may be disturbing, perhaps taboo.

Marriage, perhaps?

Circumcision?

Only as the ritual begins to be performed, do we begin to comprehend the horrific absurdity of what is unfolding before our eyes. Shot on the RED One Camera by DP Stephanie Martin, the images of the young girl and the ritual unfolding are pristine and disturbing in their clarity.

An unsettling cinematic experience because it so vividly brings to mind the rituals in our own lives, "Rite" greatly benefits from Morella's calm, assured performance as the young girl.

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