Horror movies with supernatural elements are great but movies that depict serial killers and terrifying cult practices are far more disturbing as they manage to evoke a sense of realism. However, for the most part, ‘We Summon the Darkness’ is not all that disturbing. It merges elements of horror with satire and presents you with a refreshing take on the genre. Even so, at times, the way the film depicts some of its fundamental notions and themes, one can’t help but wonder where it draws its inspirations from. So if you found yourself wondering the same, here’s everything you need to know.
Is We Summon the Darkness Based on a True Story?
‘We Summon the Darkness’ is not based on a true story, but if a real-life tale, similar to its core premise, ever surfaces, it won’t really be all that surprising. Although the film is somewhat of a parody that attempts to defy the common stereotypes of the slasher genre, if you think about it, its underlying themes do hold some significance in context with one’s religious beliefs. In its initial moments, through its background scores and setup, ‘We Summon the Darkness’ establishes that it is set in the 80s. It later just foreshadows a series of satanic ritual murders that have been going in the city. Satanic ritual abuse is an actual practice and in the United States, there was a rise in these in the 80s; which comes in tandem with the timeline of the movie.
Almost as a joke, the movie also makes references to the whole practice of satanism through symbols like the pentagram and even relates these to heavy metal music. In one of the scenes, one of the main characters is asked why he wears the pentagram around his neck. To this, he replies that it’s his way of rebelling against the common norm. This again refers to the timeline of the movie as back in the 70s and 80s, several rock bands used satanic references as their lyrics and album covers to raise their own voices against Christianity, which, according to them, required blind eradication. The underlying theme of the film adopts a similar notion: a religious cult fakes its own sinister rituals as satanic practices and then tries to lure people into blindly believing in them.
During the same period of time, the emergence of such practices gave rise to several conspiracies that claimed these rituals had more to do with the government and elite organizations of the society. Even in the movie, it is later revealed that none of those so-called satanic rituals were being committed by anti-religious organizations. It was, instead, being done by a powerful Pastor who had the intention of seeking more power by spreading terror. Apart from that, although the movie does not delve too deep into it, it shows how some of its characters live in their own constructions of the world.
Alexandra Daddario’s character, Alexis, and her two friends seem to be so contrived in their own skewed sense of religion that they are blinded to the reality of things. A lot of times, that’s exactly how its in real life. We often tend to see the world how we wish to see it. In conclusion, ‘We Summon the Darkness’ is just a slasher comedy and in no way, it attempts to critique religion. However, some of its themes, its vintage setup, and its character traits evoke a sense of familiarity for a viewer.