The Ritual ★★★

Rafe Spall's performance really made the movie for me. The Ritual feels like a mix of The Blair Witch Project and The Descent. The movie does a great job of following Rafe Spall's Luke as he deals with the guilt of a recent traumatic experience. The drama that unfolds due to that guilt amongst his friends is pretty compelling.

However, the supernatural scares and sense of being hunted feels a little thin. The movie is a slow burn and although the more frightening sequences are shot well (with the sound design in particular being spectacular), the actual action feels too vague to really latch onto. The guys come across an eerie cabin, see some creepy markings and a statue of sorts. All of these are unnerving, but when they're chased or otherwise find themselves sort of possessed, it just feels kind of randomized and not very unique.

Even with those shortcomings, however, the last 20-30 minutes of the movie are gorgeous. Visually, this movie is stunning and the characterization of Luke is worth setting aside the time to watch it.

Watched for my Shocktober 2018: My Horror Movie Homework Assigned by @IAmMikeWhite list.