Sandrine Morin, Charlotte Rea, Rohit Dave, Amanda Bowman, Lucia Tarro
WRITTEN AND DIRECTED BY
Movie Review: The Watcher
There isn't a lot that happens in Nathan Sellers' short film The Watcher.
In fact, a good majority of the film centers around what happened in the moments before as Danielle (Sandrine Morin) has been left alone in this relatively small countryside house that is, at least for a moment, seemingly idyllic.
The truth will reveal itself over the course of the film's slight yet impactful nine-minute running time. Danielle is the last member of a small religious cult, The Children of Enoch, and we watch as she awaits the resurrection of her recently departed "sisters" and the cult's leader, Father Enoch. The Watcher is dark yet grounded, Morin's contemplative performance radiates both a sense of calm and a sense of duty as she checks on her sisters, carries through the spiritual task of footwashing, and sits in silence as Father Enoch's prophetic teachings pierce the silence that surrounds her.
Of course, there is more that will unfold but that is for you to discover yourself.
The Watcher feels settled in its time, both primitive and yet not so distant. There's tragedy that envelopes us, though glimpses of light and hope and a different world shine into the darkness like broken shards of stained glass. Morin has both honored her commitment yet redefined it.
Morin's performance is meditative and mesmerizing. Rohit David's vocal work as Father Enoch is haunting and lingers in your psyche long after choices have been made and the closing credits have rolled. Lensing by Sellers with Lucia Tarro feels as if it is our very own "watcher."
Winner off the Best Horror Short Prize at GenreBlast, the horror in The Watcher is more internalized and spiritually haunting. It's certainly not easily forgotten.
For those who've experienced cults, especially of the doomsday variety, The Watcher may be a tad triggering but Sellers has crafted a beautifully constructed and meaningful film that should be remembered.
Written by Richard Propes
The Independent Critic