Athena is an indie horror film written by Michael Louis Calvillo and directed by Robert W. Filion. A horror that twists and turns all the way to its shocking & entertaining conclusion.
Carl (Matthew Ewald) is a broken man. Both physically & mentally scarred after a fire claimed the life of his wife, he lives a solitary and lonely life. Unwilling to let anyone get too close to him, least of all Emily (Vanelle). She’s also a damaged individual but finds herself drawn to Carl, something he can’t quite handle considering how much he misses his wife.
Things take a turn for Carl when he witnesses a brutal murder. Unable to help, he gains the attention of the murderer who attacks him. However, before Carl can become a victim, his attacker seemingly dies spitting bile & vomit into his face.
After being released from hospital, Carl goes home & makes the discovery that he now has a voice in his head. The voice of Athena, a kind & friendly voice that is only interested in helping Carl. She even makes the declaration that she loves him & wants him to be happy.
Under her guidance he attempts to get to know Emily a bit better but unknown to him she also has a voice inside her head that bears a lot of similarities to his.
It would seem as though the voices in their heads are trying to bring them together. The question is why?
Athena is both a psychological horror and gore-flick at the same time. The first half deals more with the emotional issues that Carl suffers as we get to know him as a character. He’s great, a character that elects sympathy and someone you can get behind. He is played wonderfully by Matthew Ewald.
The second half is a mix of flashbacks showing the origins of Athena & how Emily got involved. Here the visceral gore flies a bit more as characters vomit blood on regular occasions and we see just what happened to Carl’s original attacker.
The movie loses a bit of momentum in the second half as Carl takes a back-seat to Emily’s story & while Vanelle is a quality actress, her character doesn’t command the screen in the same way as Carl did.
The tone of the movie shifts but it still holds together thanks to a really well-told story. It’s a satisfying watch with good characters, great actors, a visual quality that betrays its indie tag and a nasty, stomach churning amount of bloody gore!
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The Final Score - 7/10