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Movie Review: Pet Sematary

April 10, 2019


Graphic by Kaitlyn Biri

Paying homage to Stephen King’s 1983 novel, Pet Sematary landed in theaters on April 5, delivering a reiteration of the suspenseful, fate-tampering tale.

Second guessing the workings of the afterlife system, the thriller is based on the tales of a mysterious burial grounds capable of resurrecting family pets.

Diving into the themes of grief, religion and mortality, Pet Sematary seeks to establish deeper meaning behind the suspense.

Although the film’s beginning portrays the fairly joyous Creed family embodying a cheerful mood, things quickly take a dark twist. Viewers should find themselves engaged with the story as the characters established likeability early in the story.

Encapsulated by pure concern for the wellbeing of the beloved family and their feline friend, Church, the audience was compelled to empathize with nearly every onset of emotions and questionable actions.

With several clued events occurring, the film’s use of foreshadowing highlights directors Kevin Kolsch and Dennis Widmyer’s proficiency.

That being said, the film could have allocated more time to detailing the story and explaining some unexplained reasoning behind the enchanted burial grounds’ inner workings.

In addition to the many questions left in the air, the film suffered from awkward transitional cuts at times. Forcing critical thoughts about the editing, these underwhelming transitions put a damper on the otherwise visually pleasing effects.

Just as Pet Sematary accomplished any thriller’s goal of building suspense and creating the on-edge feeling for viewers, the film also successfully connected with viewers on a deeper level through underlying themes and messages.

While avoiding the use of cheap jump scares, the film’s horror aspect relies entirely on suspense building and unpredictability.

Overall, the film established itself as engaging and on-edge, incorporating technical elements of critically praised filmmaking into a horror movie, which is a rare occurrence.

Being one of the better installments to the horror genre in recent years, Pet Sematary offered a viewing experience beyond a typical creepy marathon of jump scares.

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