- Ghosts of Empire Prairie (2013) Review

Title: The Sinner

Also known as:

Year: 2014

Genre: Short / Occult / Thriller / Mystery / Drama

Language: English

Runtime: 21 min

Director: Philippe Chabot & Olivier Descamps Jr.

Writer: Olivier Descamps Jr.


When a priest reaches a low point in life where he doesn't care anymore, he's visited by a strange man who goes to confession after hours.

Our thoughts:
When filmmakers look to make horror based around religion and Christianity in particular, they often look at "The Exorcist". The problem is that these filmmakers are the same people who don't get why that movie was scary. It wasn't just the gnarly look of Linda Blair's possessed Regan, yet we get over blown horror movies with big effect budgets so that they can make the most ridiculous and over-the-top possession scenes imaginable. Philippe Chabot and Olivier Descamps Jr. did something else with "The Sinner". It's a short film that takes much more inspiration from the fantastic "The Exorcist III" and not focusing on possession, but the other horrors of religion and faith in general.

Aubert Pallascio plays the role of a priest who is old and tired. He doesn't really care anymore, he does his job and does it quite well. But as soon as he can go home, he heads to the bar to drink his thoughts away. Late one night after he finds out that his mother is laying on her death bed, he goes back to the church only to find out that someone else is in there. In the confession booth. He tries to get him out of there but realizes that the only way to get rid of this prick is to listen to his confession. This is where the apathy of the priest comes to back to him, a confession where his own sins come into question.

"The Sinner" is amazingly effective. It's not REALLY a horror movie but it has the suspense of the great '70s era horror movies. That they're inspired by movies like "The Exorcist III" and not only does it well, but at times on par with them, should not be ignored. There's a lot of great talent behind the production of this, not only from the director duo, but from Aubert Pallascio who portrays his role to perfection. Most of all, "The Sinner" is a movie about religion and faith that will mean just as much to those of us without religion. That's the greatest strength.

If there is one thing I have to criticise it would be the effects. Don't get me wrong, it's not an effects heavy short, but it's not without them. The visual effects are the only things that could take me out of the short (but luckily didn't). I'm not sure if much of the budget was used towards effects but I wouldn't blame them if they put their money elsewhere first, because overall the effects are the least important thing. So yes, the effects are lacking but they're not pulling the short film down in the dirt.

One can only hope that the filmmakers will co-create something else in the future, because they've already shown great potential as directors and writer. "The Sinner" has you on the edge of the seat. Not by jump scares or over-the-top effects, but by its suspenseful and emotional revelations. I haven't seen a better short film so far this year.

Positive things:
- Uses its inspirations wisely.
- Fantastic acting by Aubert Pallascio.
- It's a short film that affects you.

Negative things:
- The visual effects.

Gore: 0/5
Nudity: 0/5
Story: 4.5/5
Effects: 2/5
Comedy: 0/5

We got this movie from:

It can be bought from:

Reviewed by:


Like us on Facebook

Best of 2017
"City of Rott: Streets of Rott" Press Release
Best of 2016
Best of 2015
Underrated Horror Movies That Aren't Underrated: A Halloween List
Howling: Halloween 2015
Amityville: Halloween 2015
A Stephen King Halloween for 2015
"Tales of the Dim" Press Release
Best of 2014
Full Moon Favorites
A '90s Halloween
Best of 2013
A Profane Preview
A Netflix Halloween for 2013
"German Angst" on Kickstarter
The Sexploitation/Erotica List
Ronny's Arthouse Films List #2
Best of 2012
Worst of 2012

Special Feature Archives

1. Okja
2. Lucky
3. 68 Kill
4. Prevenge
5. Shin Godzilla
6. Good Manners
7. Love and Other Cults
8. Get Out
9. It Comes At Night
10. November
Taken from Best of 2017

- Mondo Vision
- Second Run DVD