CULT FACTION

For all your cult film, tv, cartoon, comic and video game needs

House of Sweat and Tears (2019)

House of Sweat and Tears is the directorial debut of Sonia Escolano. The film follows the exploits of a cult trying to attain enlightenment through pain. The film isn’t as gory or shock inducing as one with such source material could be, but that works to the film’s advantage.

While most cult films go all out in showing the exaggerated horror and circumstance of being in a cult, this film’s true horror is the mundanity of life in a cult and how matter of factly these acts of sadomasochistic self-abuse are treated. The fact that people in the cult don’t seem particularly fazed by their actions, at least not to the extent they should be, shows just how easily influenced and manipulated people are.

The film is rather quiet, with most of the events taking place within a nondescript building, signifying nothing of the time or place this film is supposed to take place in. The quietness hinders the film somewhat, as the lack of substantial onscreen action means that the film is at times boring and meandering. The narrative focus is spread out, with several characters taking centre stage for a time. This means that we cannot form any attachment to the characters as they aren’t the focus for a substantial amount of time.

Additionally, the film could have benefited more from having more gore in order to showcase the ultimate extremes of their willingness to attain whatever vague goal they are attempting to. The acting is fairly good for a production of this calibre, but nobody is given a proper chance to shine due to the unclear narrative focus and the insubstantial plot. I liked certain elements of this film, but it seems as if the film is too scared to commit fully to the pretence of horrible cult life, and instead gets trapped in trying to produce a feeling of psychological discomfort as opposed to more physical and tangible pain.

Verdict: Ultimately, I would give this film a 6/10 for having immense potential but not having the gall to fully commit and go all in.

 

Related Posts
Worzel Gummidge: Guy Forks

Written, directed, and starring Mackenzie Crook, Worzel Gummidge: Guy Forks sees Worzel's cousin, Guy Forks (Paul Kaye), has taken his rightful place at the top of the bonfire, but an Read more

What If…? Ep. 1: Captain Carter Were the First Avenger?

So Marvel's What If...? has finally arrived. The idea behind it being that following the creation of the multiverse in Loki's first season finale, we now get to explore, through the eyes of Read more

Venom: Let There Be Carnage (2021)

Directed by Andy Serkis, Venom: Let There Be Carnage is a huge step up from 2018's Venom. Tom Hardy is back as Eddie Brock (and the voice of Venom) and Read more

The Suicide Squad (2021)

James Gunn's soft reboot of The Suicide Squad has finally arrived and let's be honest it wasn't hard to beat the initial version (be it a studio hack job or Read more

Texas Chainsaw Massacre (2022)

Directed by David Blue Garcia, co- directed by Christian Mye and Edward Mathias with a screenplay by Chris Thomas Devlin, from an original story co-written by Fede Álvarez and Rodo Sayagues, the new Texas Read more

Squid Game Ep. 2: Hell

Warning! Spoilers included, but none that will impact the overall viewing of the episode. Ok, so from the plot we know that the organisers of the squid game are not Read more

Squid Game Ep. 1: Red Light, Green Light

Disclaimer: Similes were hurt in the making of this review. So once again the internet has been buzzing with excited hype and anticipation like a mass swarming desperate, needy bees Read more

Review: Last Train to Christmas (2021)

Written and directed by Julian Kemp, Last Train to Christmas follows Michael Sheen as the Peter Stringfellow like Tony Towers, an 1980's celebrity nightclub owner who is on a train, Read more

Review- The Book of Boba Fett Chapter 1: Stranger in a Strange Land

Written by Jon Favreau and directed by Robert Rodriguez, The Book of Boba Fett Chapter 1: Stranger in a Strange Land opens with everyone's favourite anti-hero Boba Fett (Temuera Morrison) Read more

Review- Halloween Girl #2

The return to Richard T. Wilson’s Halloween Girl will no doubt make fans happy. The second in the series continues the heroine Charlotte’s story, the graphic novels themselves existing in Read more

Masters of the Universe: Revelation Ep. 9: Hope, for a Destination

Teela uses her newly acquired magic skills to send a telepathic message to the people of Eternia whilst Adam and Skeletor agree to team up against the Godlike Lyn. Lyn Read more

Masters of the Universe: Revelation Ep. 8: The Gutter Rat

Following Savage He-Man's attack in Episode 7, Masters of the Universe: Revelation Ep. 8: The Gutter Rat sees He-Man back to normal and reuniting with his father King Randor. Later Read more

Masters of the Universe: Revelation Ep. 7: Reason and Blood

With Adam's transformation in Savage He-Man at the end of Episode 6, Masters of the Universe: Revelation Ep. 7: Reason and Blood opens with Skeletor and He-Man battling. Skeletor's magic Read more

Masters of the Universe: Revelation Ep. 6: Cleaved in Twain

Picking up directly from the end of Episode 5, Masters of the Universe: Revelation Ep. 6: Cleaved in Twain, sees a victorious Skeletor bragging and lauding his success over his Read more

Masters of the Universe: Revelation Ep. 5: The Forge at the Forest Forever

Picking up directly from the end of Episode 4, Masters of the Universe: Revelation Ep. 5: The Forge at the Forest Forever reveals that Prince Adam's sacrifice led to his Read more

Masters of the Universe: Revelation Ep. 4: Land of the Dead

Following directly on from Episode 3, Masters of the Universe: Revelation Ep. 4: Land of the Dead sees our heroes entering  Subternia - the Land of the Dead! Once inside Read more

Masters of the Universe: Revelation Ep. 3: The Most Dangerous Man in Eternia

In Masters of the Universe: Revelation Ep.3: The Most Dangerous Man in Eternia, Teela (Sarah Michelle Gellar), Andra (Tiffany Smith), and Evil-Lyn (Lena Headey) are looking for new allies to Read more

Masters of the Universe: Revelation Ep. 2: The Poisoned Chalice

Following on from the events of Episode 1, Teela (Sarah Michelle Gellar) is now working as a mercenary alongside her friend Andra (Tiffany Smith). They retrieve the Glove of Globolah from Read more

Masters of the Universe: Revelation Ep. 10: Comes with Everything You See Here

It is all kicking off in Masters of the Universe: Revelation Ep. 10: Comes with Everything You See Here and so it should! It is the final episode! We have Read more

Hellbound – Episode 1

Directed by Yeon Sang-ho (Train to Busan, Train to Busan 2: Peninsula), Hellbound is a six episode series that is based on Sang-ho's webtoon of the same name. It stars Read more

%d bloggers like this: