Saturday 17 February 2024

REVIEW: Sunrise (2024 Film) Starring Alex Pettyfer, Crystal Yu, William Gao, Kurt Yaeger, Olwen Fouéré and Guy Pearce

Review By Jon Donnis
"Sunrise," directed by Andrew Baird and written by Ronan Blaney, is a horror film set in a small blue-collar town in the Pacific Northwest. The movie opens with the introduction of a mythological forest demon known as Red Coat, said to grant eternal life in exchange for blood sacrifices. The plot revolves around the conflict between a racist local businessman, Joe Reynolds (portrayed by Guy Pearce), and an Asian American family, the Lois, who refuse to sell their land to him.

The film has Reynolds murdering Mr. Loi in a fit of rage after he refuses to sell his land. The story then follows Loi's wife, Yan (Crystal Yu), and their children as they face threats and violence from Reynolds while trying to hold onto their property. Amidst this turmoil, a sickly man named Fallon (played by Alex Pettyfer) appears on their doorstep, and Yan decides to nurse him back to health. Fallon's presence brings a sense of mystery as he becomes involved with the Loi family and Reynolds' escalating threats.

The strengths of "Sunrise" lie in the performance of Guy Pearce as the menacing Joe Reynolds and the immersive setting of the small town in the Pacific Northwest. The cast delivers solid performances, particularly Crystal Yu as Yan Loi, capturing the tension and fear of the family facing threats from Reynolds.

However, the film falls short in several aspects. The dialogue feels generic, lacking depth and originality, while character development remains shallow. Additionally, the introduction of the demon character, Red Coat, feels underdeveloped and tacked on, detracting from the overall coherence of the plot. The film also struggles with its genre identity, shifting between supernatural horror and social commentary on issues like racism and the American Dream, which may leave viewers feeling disjointed.

Overall, "Sunrise" fails to fully capitalize on its promising premise and talented cast. While it attempts to explore complex themes, it ultimately falls short due to poor execution and lack of focus. The film's inclusion of identity politics and social critique may polarize audiences, detracting from its potential as a horror film. Consequently, "Sunrise" receives a disappointing rating of 3 out of 10.

Out now on
Amazon Prime -