Solstice (2008) Movie Review
Written By: LFG
Edited By: Grave Reviews Staff
Director: Daniel Myrick
Producers: Adam Del Deo, Mikkel Bondesen, et. al.
Writers: Daniel Myrick, Martin Musatov, Ethan Erwin
Date Released: January 1, 2008
Elisabeth Harnois as Megan
Shawn Ashmore as Christian
Tyler Hoechlin as Nick
Amanda Seyfried as Zoe
Matt O’Leary as Mark
Hilarie Burton as Alicia
R. Lee Ermey as Leonard
Jenna Hildebrand as Malin
Rating = 2/5 Graves
***May contain some spoilers***
Life has never been the same for Megan (Elisabeth Harnois) and her family after her twin sister, Sophie, committed suicide. Megan decides to spend some time with her friends, including Sophie’s ex-boyfriend Christian (Shawn Ashmore), to celebrate the annual summer solstice at her family’s old lake house to keep her distracted from the pain. Upon arriving at the house, she finds a tattered key chain on her sister’s old bed. Subsequently, Megan feels a strange presence everywhere she goes. In addition, she begins having weird dreams and visions. As a result, Megan starts to see a dark shadowy figure lurking around the house and the key chain seems to be “following” her around despite the number of times she tries to get rid of it. One day while out jogging, she gets into a minor accident and meets an old man named Leonard (R. Lee Ermey) and starts to get suspicious when she sees a hat identical to Sophie’s inside his van. The truth begins to unravel after the group holds a séance, led by Nick (Tyler Hoechlin), on the lake. Soon, Megan learns the secret behind the ghost and the real reason why her sister committed suicide.
There was no gore in this film, but there were a lot of creepy and terrifying scenes. One of the scariest scenes occurred when the ghost that was haunting Megan was revealed to be the little girl, Malin. In addition, the special effects were well-done and incorporated nicely into the film.
The Grave Review
Solstice (2008) is a direct-to-video supernatural horror film and a remake of the 2003 film, Midsommer. The film has a simple mix of supernatural and mystery that is told in a solid and engaging way. The dark and gothic cinematography is excellent and the film’s swamp and woodland setting definitely gives off a creepy aura. It’s also worth noting that the director, Daniel Myrick, is responsible for the Blair Witch Project, so there is already expectation that this film would bring the same horror to the table.
The film features a series of flashbacks that connects the viewers to the mystery behind what’s happening in the film at present. It adds to the buildup and suspense of the story. As for the characters, the group of teens are not your usual dumb or clueless set that most horror movies have. They come off realistic and the acting is surprisingly far from mediocre.
You can immediately tell that Christian, Sophie’s ex-boyfriend, is hiding something. He is a selfish person and this selfishness contributed to the death of Sophie. As for the main protagonist, Elisabeth Harnois did Megan’s character justice. She made the character likeable and interesting in her own way. You can’t help but be drawn to her, especially in scenes where she is playing both Sophie and Megan. Another interesting character is Leonard, portrayed by veteran actor R. Lee Ermey. His character is minor but has weight to the story.
Overall, Solstice (2008) is effective in conveying horror without over-the-top effects. There is no gore, no outright violent scenes—the somber mood and mystery are enough to make it enjoyable. The premise may have some cliché elements, but it is still interesting, and the big plot twist toward the end gives the story a satisfying ending.
For the foregoing reasons, Grave Reviews gives Solstice (2008) two graves out of five graves.
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