When I first saw the poster for The Shrine, a new serious-toned feature about the occult, it quickly earned a mental note. The poster’s ominous imagery (as seen bel0w) perfectly tapped the exploration of a foreign-born religio-horror without giving anything away. And though I later discovered that the film is set in a fictional village in Poland, I couldn’t shake the notion that it was tapping into a similar fear of ancient practices as expressed in Song of Kali, the popular Calcutta-set horror novel that creeps me out more than a year later.* But I was thrown off by the film’s directror, Jon Knautz, best known for helming Jack Brooks: Monster Slayer, a tongue-in-cheek 2007 B-movie co-starring Robert Englund.
A new teaser trailer has arrived, and while it isn’t a flawless counterpart to the poster on par with the one-two knockout of The House of the Devil, it offers a somewhat less enticing prospect of gym-faithful backpackers a la Hostel and The Ruins (so underrated!) meets a Wicker Man-like freakshow. Some of the more generic-looking shots give me pause—namely ones of leather studded, “traditional” wrist-bands. But unlike the newly in-gear Children of the Corn and dozens of other frightfests, it’s not a remake, which is nice.