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Cast: Stefanie Estes (If Looks Could Kill), Zack Ward (Restoration), Keith Jardine (John Wick), Leon Russom (TV’s Prison Break) and Felissa Rose (Sleepaway Camp)
After Claire's mother dies, she and her husband move back to her childhood home only to have the abusive and traumatic memories of her mother come back and bring unrest into the house. Claire soon finds herself in a fog of past and present when her imaginary friend from childhood begins haunting her memories. What is this terrifying thing that is trying to reach out to her, and what does it want?
Claire never had a childhood thanks to her over bearing mother who was so obsessed with her own fading beauty that she forced Claire into entering one pageant after another. She never allowed her to play with other children either so Claire had her imaginary friend, Bethany. That was years ago and now that her mother has passed away Claire along with her husband, Aaron are moving into her family home. Upon arriving Claire immediately feels unpleasant vibes about the house. She is coming off the loss of her latest child who was stillborn so her psyche is still a bit fragile.
Before long Claire starts to hear and see strange things and she begins to suspect that her old friend from inside the walls of the old home is either haunting her or is trying to tell her something. Is the old house haunted by Bethany, her mother or is it all in Claire's head?
Gothic Horror meets "Mommy Dearest" in this twisty gem from Director, James Cullen Bressack which he co-wrote with Zac Ward who also stars in the film. Early on in the film we find out about Claire's last pregnancy which ended in a stillborn death. Her Husband Aaron wants to try and have a child again but Claire doesn't really want to but not because of the strange things that are happening in the home but because she doesn't want to turn out to be like her own mother. The strange things that begin happening almost immediately continue on and they become more and more intense by the day which begins to weigh heavily on Claire's already fragile mind. This allows the film to build an enormous amount of suspense and mystery as we wait to find out what is going on. The things that Claire sees and hears creates a lot chills and scares for the audience as well. The film is quite creepy and the house really adds to the atmosphere.
"Bethany" does a great job at hiding her secrets, Director, Bressack skillfully spoon feeds the audience a little bit of the answers at a time which really creates a lot of suspense and anticipation. It isn't until late in the film when the horror family secret is revealed that we fully understand just how horrific the story is.
Production wise the film looks and sounds terrific. The effects used in the film are kept to a minimum but the ones that are used are very well done. I liked that Bressack relied on the story and its characters to create all the atmosphere instead of unnecessary effects. The cinematography and sound were fantastic and like I already stated the house used was the perfect setting.
I thought the film brought a great deal of new ideas to the table and it felt fresh and original. Another thing that made the film so good was the cast, Stefanie Estes is fantastic as Claire and Zack Ward is as well as her husband, Aaron. Estes really delivers on a character that is extremely complex. The film also stars Tom Green as Claire's doctor and Shannen Doherty as her over bearing mother.
"Bethany" is part Gothic tale and it is also a tale of the worse kind of abuse a child can suffer. I really enjoyed the film and was sucked into Claire's world right from the start. The writing, direction and cast kept me clued to the screen as I kept wanting to know more. "Bethany" releases in theaters and On Demand April 7 via Uncork’d Entertainment. If you are an Indie film maker today Uncork'd Entertainment is definitely the studio you want releasing your film. They have quickly become the leader in Independent distribution. I highly recommend book marking when "Bethany" comes out so you can check it out as soon as it is released.
Released by Uncork’d Entertainment
**** Out Of *****