A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
Characters display perseverance and courage trying to find and expose the truth behind the reason for a curse. Greed and revenge are prominent themes resulting in the deaths of innocent people.
Positive Role Models
Isabelle Laurent shows courage when she risks her safety to expose the truth behind a corrupt land-grab that led to a family being cursed. Pathologist John McBride is determined to uncover the reason his family were killed by a similar curse to the one that plagues the town. A land baron and his team conspire to kill a Romani group so they can lay claim to their land. This act results in innocent members of his family and other children being killed.
The movie is set in France but characters speak English with an English accent. Romani characters speak in Romani language and are subtitled, rather than actors speaking English-language lines with an accent. Romani people are called "gypsies" in the movie. Colonization is a theme -- the Romani people have a claim to the land they are on but this is taken from them by a corrupt land baron and local noblemen.
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Violence & Scariness
Strong, gory violence with bloody wounds and effects. Jump scares. Bloody surgery scenes following a battle. A character has their hands and feet cut off and their body is used as a scarecrow. Someone is buried alive. Possessed children bite others. A child's gory corpse is shown. A monster attacks people. World War I soldiers suffer a gas attack in the trenches and are fired on with a machine gun. A character kills themselves with fire. A village is attacked by mercenaries and people are shot dead.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
A character's breasts are seen when they wash their hair topless. Bare bottom shown while wounds are dressed.
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The language is very infrequent but does include "whore" and "f---ing." Romani people are referred to as "gypsies."
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Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Two characters drink alcohol while chatting together.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that The Cursed is a gory horror movie with child deaths, bloody violence, mythology, curses, and plenty of jump scares. Set in 19th-centruy France, pathologist John McBride (Boyd Holbrook) is tasked with investigating who -- or what -- is responsible for a spate of attacks on a quiet village. Expect unflinching violence, including a man having his hands and feet hacked off, a woman buried alive, and gory surgery scenes. The film also includes children killing people as well as being killed themselves. Characters are also shot dead and someone sets themselves on fire. Scenes that are set in World War I show soldiers being shot at and gassed in the trenches. Breasts and a bare bottom are shown in non-sexual scenes. There are two uses of strong language, which includes "f---ing" and "whore," while Romani people are called the derogatory slur "gypsies." In some regions the film goes by the title Eight for Silver. To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
Blending folklore with gruesome gore, this American-French horror gets lots of things right. The Cursed isn't for the squeamish -- a man has his hands and feet hacked off and left on a cross as a scarecrow, drawing children to him in their dreams. And that's one of the milder moments of violence. Rather than being exploitative though it's all in the name of creepy fun. The movie's standout moments are visual choices. The mercenary attack on the Romani camp that kicks off the curse is brilliantly shot. Rather than get up close to the action, the entire scene plays out from far away, observing the murder and destruction in a single long take. It feels both a throwback to 1970s filmmaking and entirely fresh for today.
Another throwback that stands out is the movie's use of practical effects. A late rejig of the movie saw it renamed and, more importantly, some substandard CGI removed to focus on the deliciously icky and sticky gruesome in-camera effects that recall John Carpenter's The Thing. The movie dips a little after the beast is revealed and it meanders to its conclusion. But with strong characters and refreshingly unsettling horror violence, The Cursed is a fun chiller.
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