The Binding (Il Legame): Movie Review

Even with its outstanding technical work, the Italian horror film "The Binding" ("Il Legame") failed to be anything but visually impressive. The experience was mostly a dud as it lacked interesting characters coupled with a sorely missing scare factor. 

Francesco (Riccardo Scamarcio) and Emma (Mía Maestro) are ready to take their relationship to the next level and decide to visit Francesco's mother in the South of Italy - with them is Emma's young daughter Sofia (Giulia Patrignani). As soon as they arrive, Sofia and Emma experience weird phenomena and when a tarantula bites Sofia, they discover that a malevolent and powerful entity was at fault and has "binded" with Sofia. The only way to save her is to fight the entity head-on.
The very thought that came to our minds while watching "The Binding" is how many times have we seen a film like this before? It’s a pretty generic affair if we’re being blunt and worse, there's really no main antagonist that we could latch and hang onto in the narrative. The film decided to play mind games by keeping everything vague and doubtful and you’ll be second-guessing who is actually telling the truth most of the time - which could have worked - but crucially, the writers also forgot to put in any chills and scares in between. By the time the real villain was unveiled it was a little too late - the whole experience was already a snore fest and any scares failed to make any significant impact. Additionally, the characters were mostly paper thin, developed sparingly and written without much care or thought. Characters will make unreasonable decisions time and time again and we never found ourselves caring whatever happens to them - except for the character of Sofia. The only saving grace for "The Binding" was its topnotch technical work. The sets looked amazing conveying grandeur and dilapidation at the same time and provided a suitable set piece. The cinematography was outstanding at times but surprisingly failed to add much atmosphere. Unfortunately, the film lacked any character or heart. It's a generic experience that didn't bring any emotion into the table. It’s not the worst horror film on Netflix but it is also barely acceptable.
Rating: 2 and a half reels 

Why you should 
- the technical work like cinematography had potential

 Why you shouldn't watch 
- it's a pretty generic affair
- the characters are uninteresting and underdeveloped
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