The Invitation

★★☆☆ – (2015) – A couple is invited to a reunion where cult members introduce them to their way of life, but (at first) don’t press their agenda. An incredibly slow builder that sprinkles in enough intrigue throughout to hold attention. Has a few brushes with suspense, but ends with a purpose that’s shattered by the overall lack of human emotion.

Unfriended: Dark Web

★½☆☆ – (2018) – A stolen laptop and mishandled money lead to terror for unsuspecting friends. Irritating in the set-up, decent when horror’s included, but ultimately dull and pointless. Not one character involved is worth worrying about, which kills any chance this had in building tension.

The Amityville Murders

★★½☆ – (2018) – A young man obliterates his dysfunctional family after a slow dissolve involving abuse, drugs, and infrequent haunts. A variation of Amityville II that doesn’t resort to as much corn, but rather tries to depict history in a more straightforward manner. Not always on point, and the Long Island accents are a bit much, but by the end this is wholly effective.

Summer of 84

★½☆☆ – (2018) – Four friends investigate the neighbor they believe is an active serial killer. Follows the basic patterns and results of a film actually made in the 80s, The ‘Burbs, and fails drastically in comparison. On its own this feels like an overlong Scooby-Doo episode with obvious plotting and predictable outcomes. Ending on a down note helps, but getting there takes forever.

Mandy

★★½☆ – (2018) – A mild mannered lumberjack goes after the cult that roasted his wife. The first half, while painfully slow, offers high levels of intrigue, while the second half provides all the Nicolas Cage bombast you could ever want or expect. Stylish one moment, basic the next, but always hard to look away from.