Indonesian horror is gaining a lot of traction for me lately, mainly due to the emergence of writer/director Joko Anwar. He is quickly becoming one of my favorite new voices in horror. I wrote about his incredible film, Satan’s Slaves a few years ago, and now I’m here to write about his most recent one, Impetigore. Here’s the brief synopsis from imdb.
Maya with her best friend, Dini, tries to survive in a city without a family. She realized that she might inherit a property from her rich family. Maya returns to the village with Dini and unaware of the danger was waiting for her.
Impetigore is quite a ride. Once it moves away from the city (which has an amazingly suspenseful scene that takes place in a toll booth) and into the extremely rural village, it almost feels like an Indonesian folk horror. To this Westerner, it just feels so unique and terrifying. I’m a sucker for the “small villages with a secret” type of story. And this village has quite the doozy. Now, I should warn some more delicate viewers that there is some VERY disturbing imagery that takes place in this film. I mean, it’s a horror movie, so you kind of expect it. But whenever skinning is involved, or some other disturbing scenes with newborn babies, I feel I need to label that so you know what you’re getting into. Although to me, this is horror. Impetigore is almost like a dark fairy tale that transports you to a foreign time and place most of us are completely unfamiliar with. It’s dark, it’s disturbing, and it’s hauntingly beautiful. Keep ‘em coming, Joko. You are exactly the type of unique voice that horror needs right now.
Where to Watch: Streaming on Shudder and AMC+
Food/Drink Pairing: A big bowl of fried pork rinds.