A group of teenagers, all of whom have secrets, one of whom has a secret darker than the rest, is having a party. There’s alcohol, drugs, and sex aplenty. And then they start messing around with a Ouija board. Then one of the group gets possessed, and bad things happen. How cliché does that sound? Like every third Horror movie you’ve ever seen, right? Imagine my surprise, then, when I viewed NOCTURNE, the premise of which I just summarized, and it was actually GOOD. It’s REALLY good, in fact. How? How could such stereotypical material yield a positive result? Credit a smart screenplay, with snappy dialogue and well fleshed-out characters. A good script and good acting turn what could have been forgettable, if not downright abysmal, into a fine little film. (On the acting front, the actress portraying the character who gets possessed and then goes all Evil Dead on the others doesn’t quite have the chops to pull off the needed sense of menace, but this is a small quibble overall. The rest of the cast makes up for it by their reactions to the same.)
There are no fur or fangs in this one, just an evil spirit, but it’s well worth your time. Trust me on that. The funny thing is, I wasn’t even planning to see NOCTURNE. At the LEGLESS CORPSE HALLOWEEN HORROR FILM FESTIVAL this past weekend, I made sure my butt was in a seat in the theater in time to catch a werewolf flick they were showing. The schedule was off, though, and they showed NOCTURNE instead. It was a fortuitous accident. I can’t imagine the werewolf flick—the title of which I can’t even remember now—could have been any better.