Distressing and disturbing, St. Agatha succeeds at relaying important messages in the form of a genuine horror flick.
When Mary, pregnant and unmarried, decides to do what is best for her child, she leaves behind a grieving life to enter one of silence and devotion at a convent for unfortunate women. The convent and the workers within are seemingly god sent until more and more light is shown on their twisted plans for Mary and the other girls.
St. Agatha isn’t a certified nunsploitation film, but rather a horror film with nuns in it. Their presence wasn’t essential in selling the story nor in conveying the message. Issues like women’s rights and sexual health are abounding the moment it begins but fluxes with the characters own evolution instead of being stagnant. The balance of drama and horror was near perfect; you’ll be sad, grossed out, and cheering for more. The 1950’s setting isn’t completely sold but that’s becoming somewhat of a trademark for director Darren Bousman. Time and place matter but it’s his own interpretation of that time period. Similarities between this and his last film Abattoir are acceptably abundant. The cast was smart and steadfast with both their physical and emotional performances. Carolyn Hennessy deserves a place beside horror’s other villainesses for her hardened and unbelievably wicked portrayal as Mother Superior. Hannah Fierman (SiREN, V/H/S) plays a vulnerable and pivotal part in exposing just how demented the sisters really treat the women in their care.
The qualms are small but large in offense, as the ending was much too abrupt and nearly catapulted the rest of the film. It didn’t conclude the long timeline of the film with enough satisfaction when weighing the amount of bull shit the main character was put through. It simply wasn’t cruel enough and was much too neat when compared to the turmoil present in the entire movie.
The emotional turmoil the audience is put through during St. Agatha is earnest. Some of the pain is implied, other times we witness it as it is given. The sour ending isn’t enough to take the bitter sweetness from the majority of movie though and should be taken with a grain of salt. It’s for fans of heart-breaky stories that don’t shy away from the graphic stuff.