4L’s review published on Letterboxd:
I didn't plan on writing a review before, but after reading some of the "reviews" -- really just people questioning where the sequel was -- I decided to help out everyone else who was questioning the same.
For the noobs asking where the sequel is, *4 years later,* you were clearly misinformed. Don't worry, I was in the same boat as you lot, except I did some research. Turns out, this is actually the second installment of a three-part horror series, all released in the same year. The other movies that are a part of this series are called "The Crone" and "Talk to the Dead", respectively. Cult is the second part of the series, and I'm guessing The Crone is the first part, as its title in Japanese -- The Crone 1 -- seems to point out, leaving Talk to the Dead as the final installment of the series. All written and directed by three different directors, this is the only one that is shot in a found footage style. Luckily for me, found footage horror is one of my favorite subgenres.
On to the review, the movie starts off well with a gripping scene that is reminiscent of Noroi: the Curse. Why do I say this? Because the director uses the same style of filming in both movies: he tends to freeze a frame, and slowly zooms in at something creepy we might have missed earlier, while an ominous soundtrack plays in the background. I really enjoy it whenever he does this. He's done it in other movies also-- "Occult" comes in mind, which is a must-watch! Worms seem to be a big deal in this director's movies. Although I would have preferred creatures that are actually scary, such as onryos. Sure, to the ignorant Westerner it's seen as a typical Asian trope, but it's much more than that.
I wouldn't say this is one of the best horror movies ever made, but certainly is enjoyable. There is minimal gore, which is actually censored. But other than that, this picture relies on atmosphere. A couple of jump scares here and there, but none of those in-your-face type of scares, which I really hate but Westerners really love.
As mentioned earlier, the movie has an open ending because it's part of a series and therefore it should not be considered as a cheap way to end the movie for a sequel in the future.
All in all, this is a nice, enjoyable horror movie which actually managed to creep me out with a certain scene that really stood out to me, and it involved a staircase as well as the use of fast-forwarding.