Books Of Blood Image

Books Of Blood

By Bobby LePire | October 8, 2020

To be fair, Books Of Blood does eventually get back to Jenna’s story, but it feels more tacked on than an organic way of wrapping up the whole anthology. Why Simon and Braga decided to split up the narratives, without a fully cohesive wraparound, is a mystery that may never get solved. And yes, the ending to the gangsters’ story is just as big of a letdown, proving that those scenes only served as empty filler. Literally, there is not even an attempt at scares with these two.

The second story, about Simon and Mary, is the best one, with an ending (before the hitmen {?} show up) that is pretty messed up and satisfying. It also happens to be the only one based on any of Barker’s stories. The other two are originals, and the lack of creativity and cerebral horror (Barker’s bread and butter) clearly delineates the quality. Now, don’t misunderstand, as Simon and Mary’s section is still rife with issues.

“…so bland and tension-free it could not make a cat jump into a tree.”

For one, the actors don’t share believable chemistry, so the romance angle fails miserably. And of course, Braga, making his feature-length debut after years of television, is just not a strong enough director to make any aspect of Books Of Blood bloodcurdling. Heck, even the jump scares lacked punch and energy.

But, there are a few positives here, namely the cast. While Friel and Gavron don’t share chemistry, they do well enough. Friel is especially engaging near the end of her section, turning something as benign as closing the door into a horrific act. But the true star is Britt Robertson, who elicits empathy from the audience, despite an underwritten character. She ably sells the fear her character goes through, despite none of that being evident on the screen itself. If you are a big fan of the actress, you will not be disappointed in her, as she elevates the undeserving material.

Books Of Blood seeks to emulate the style of Mike Flanagan, but it forgets what makes his projects so scary – three-dimensional characters stuck in a supernatural situation with no way out. Braga’s direction is so bland and tension-free it could not make a cat jump into a tree. The cast all try their best, but only Robertson comes out unscathed. There is not a single reason to ever watch this movie.

Books Of Blod (2020)

Directed: Brannon Braga

Written: Brannon Braga, Adam Simon

Starring: Britt Robertson, Anna Friel, Freda Foh Shen, Rafi Gavron, Nicholas Campbell, etc.

Movie score: 4/10

Books Of Blod Image

"…Britt Robertson...elevates the undeserving material."

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