The Adams family has produced a shocking and amazing coming-of-age tale where teenage angst, growing up homeschooled and witchcraft mix for a very potent brew. You might remember their 2019 breakout film, The Deeper You Dig. This new effort really shows a huge progression in their craft and it’s bound to be an audience favourite. Let’s have a look at what’s in store for the unsuspecting audience this time around.
Hellbender (2021) is written and directed by John Adams, Zelda Adams and Toby Poser. Izzy (Zelda Adams) has been isolated from the world, living with her mother (Toby Poser) deep inside the mountains and never having seen another soul. Her mother is the only one that goes into town whenever they need anything. They live off the land and have their own band, Hellbender. However as Izzy grows up, she starts wondering about the world outside and even manages to make a friend in Amber (Lulu Adams). But mother is always watching, using unique talents that she eventually shares with Izzy.
I love both the chemistry and the dichotomy that exists between Izzy and her mother. When we start to see what mother is capable off, it would seem she has gone to extraordinary lengths to protect Izzy from the world for selfish reasons and she is our antagonist. But as we move our story forward and Izzy slowly gets a little more daring, you start wondering if Izzy is not the actual antagonist and mother is trying to protect the world from them. The truth lies somewhere in between.
Extremely recommended. Top notch marks in horror, witchcraft and well crafted character development. Zelda Adams and Toby Poser give us a mother-daughter family unit that is engaging and worth investing your time in. With a killer soundtrack and trippy visuals, the filmmakers have raised their production to the next level. Expect one of the best writing, cinematography and specially sound design from everything I’ve seen so far. Definitely worth a watch and your time. I definitely need this film in my collection.
That will do for now.