Sin Eater (2022) Review

Spoiler-free so you can read before you watch

Sin Eater (2022) Review

Horrorific content by angie on July 13th, 2022 | Movie Review | Supernatural, Religion, Cult, Demon, Thriller, Mystery, Isolation, B-Horror

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It's about a woman who survives a car crash but has her jaw wired shut from her injuries, and must survive the dark faith of a town in the middle of nowhere.

Sin Eater was directed by Carmelo Chimera and stars Jessie NerudBill Moseley (Prisoners of the Ghostland, I Am Fear, Crepitus), Danny Bohnen, and Scotty Bohnen.

Sin Eater (2022) Review

When you experience a car crash, it can be a really traumatic event. You may feel like you're in shock, and it can be hard to process what happened. You may have injuries that require medical attention. You may also be dealing with damage to your car. All of this can be really overwhelming and can take some time to recover from.

Sin Eater begins after one such traumatic car accident that leaves one woman dead and another with severe injuries to her face and mouth. The surviving woman, Christine, must grapple with the aftermath. She's still alive, but her jaw is wired shut, and she's stuck in a small town in the middle of nowhere.

Looking for a place to crash until her lacerations have healed, she ventures out with the local sheriff Isaac and his father Abraham, the town's minister. She also meets the nurse who took care of her in the infirmary, Elijah. This creates tension as the two are rivals for Abraham's job as minister.

Carmelo Chimera's low-budget opening is convincing, showing what can be done on a smaller budget. Unfortunately, the crash isn't shown, but he manages to get a believable wreck from the junkyard and invests in some gruesome practical effects for the victims.

The religious undertones of "Sin Eater" are evident from the beginning, with the names of the town and its inhabitants alluding to biblical figures. In addition, Christine interacts with three townspeople involved in ministry, furthering the connection to religion. Christine, a former Catholic, ceased to practice the faith due to events in her past where Father Dunn, at her parents' request, performed conversion therapy on her, which closely resembles torture.

From the dark and sinister setting, it's not hard to guess that the local religion is one of malice and hate. Christine is critical of this religion, though the script doesn't offer surprises, sticking to familiar devices such as flashbacks, hallucinations, and people who may or may not be ghosts. There is even a YouTube video with Professor Carpenter to provide information and explain the concept of sin eating.

The cinematography is quite good, and it's clear that a lot of effort went into making Sin Eater. We even see the accident that opens the film later on, and it's a nicely done bit of stunt work. The third act of the film, however, is exposition heavy and relies on dialogue to move the plot forward, slows down the pacing, and makes the film less attractive.

Some viewers may have difficulty understanding what is happening in the final scenes of Sin Eater due to the darkness of the visuals. The film's finale is unsatisfying, and though there is some disturbing dental damage and painful-looking burns, it does not match the tone of the rest of the film.

Worth Watching? 

I commend Carmelo Chimera, Nicholas Chimera, and Robert O'Neal for their inventive story and for not turning it into a low-budget film with no special effects. But Sin Eater doesn't have enough happening to make up for the predictable plotting. Or an interesting enough idea to overcome the chattiness and lack of action. Sin Eater is a watchable movie if nothing else is available, but it's not unique.

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