Francine, the adult daughter of a pious mother must overcome her madness to be accepted into an Ivy League school masters program.
A beautifully dark story which makes you think about the world, goals, thoughts, life and transformation of mind. That’s how I describe Alexander Henderson‘s horror movie “Becoming Death” released in 2022 which features the story of a psychology student Francine (skillfully played by Jennifer Buckley) who starts to see the Angel of Death /Blood Woman (brought to life by Merlynda Sol) then strange things start happening during the process of interviewing for an Ivy League Master’s Program.
Francine Ulysses is a hardworking and ambitious young lady who received a call about getting accepted into an Ivy League University but the only thing that remains is an interview with the Dean. She is happy and that’s when the Blood woman or the Angel of Death tells her that she will be destroyed. Francine is a quiet lady by nature and super observant due to her interest in becoming a clinical psychologist. We see the relationship with her mother being an uneasy one with her mother (Well played by Mandy May Cheetham) emphasizing on believing in God and praying. Her father has been a mystery throughout the movie. Her sister (Portrayed energetically by Alivia Levie) who has been disowned by their mother is supportive of Francine even though she has had a bad life and thus wants Francine to continue being ambitious without listening to what others say. We see Francine’s boyfriend (Played by Tyler Johnson Ellis) briefly which shows her gentle side. After knowing Francine and her family, we see Francine making the necessary moves to progress through the admission process.
The Dean’s interview is at the Dean’s home. We see Francine being greeted by Dean’s partner (Remarkably portrayed by Abigail Hunt) who doesn’t like Francine at all but appreciates her manners. We eventually see Francine go to the interview room where the Dean, Harry (Super impressive & scary performance by Reid Schmidt), is standing and is wearing a mask. After some odd interactions, the mask comes off but the things are not so easy for Francine as she doesn’t have real life work or internship experience with her. Things do seem to go bad but then there comes a ray of hope. This is when the situation starts to become like a nightmare and Francine gets herself in a dreadfully scary situation. We also see Dean’s neighbor Ulysses (Nicely played by producer Adam Cabrera) arrive to check in and also see the transformation of Francine into a brave and strong lady. The movie ends in an exciting way and leaves you wanting for more even though the current story completes perfectly.
I never expected an independent movie to be made with such a great production value that rivals Hollywood. It seems appropriate when you check out the previous works of Alexander Henderson. The writing and editing keeps this movie interesting and the suspense never ends.
The acting performance of Jennifer Buckley has been the most important part of the entire movie because her expressions tell a lot about the situations. From a humble and ambitious student to a determined, powerful lady, Jennifer Buckley portrays Francine in a natural way that adds life to each scene. Merlynda Sol as the antagonistic spirit is outstanding as the demonic expressions and threatening movements are performed in a way that feels scary and never laughable. It’s the closest you can see an artist out 100% into a role even though training for such roles is not easy as there’s no reference to be taken for a demon or a ghost. Francine’s mother is played excellently as we do feel the care and oddness in her performance apt for the character. Francine’s rebellious sister was a challenging role but the performance makes us like her. Dean has been portrayed excellently and almost takes the spotlight as if he was the protagonist. The disciplined anger and expressions are excellent. Dean’s wife’s dark humor and passive aggressiveness works well. The neighbor Ulysses’ humor and straightforwardness works well.
The special effects, and make up help add authenticity to everything and the blood does help with the horror. The music and sound effects make this a joyous ride. Overall, the entire cast and crew has put their full efforts in making this a masterpiece. This movie has no nudity and suggestive scenes. It does contain psychological horror, blood, some strong language, and a few violent scenes. It’s a great movie to watch for teens and above.
In conclusion, Alexander Henderson’s Becoming Death is an entertaining and scary masterpiece that’s an art in motion. Horror, Suspense & Unforgettable Performances by all make this a must watch!
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