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In 2017, Alberto Corredor directed an award-winning 15-minute short titled 'Baghead', centring on a man haunted by grief asking questions only the recently deceased can answer. Now in 2024, Corredor returns with a feature length flick of the same title, that expands on what was delivered in the short. Bringing together a competent cast including The Witcher's Freya Allan and Bridgerton's Ruby Barker, and taking us to an old creepy pub setting, Baghead has been on horror fans agenda's for quite some time. Despite it's chilling unique location and it's promising cast, Baghead bites off more than it can chew and fails to fill out it's feature-length run-time with suitable scares.


A young woman inherits a run-down pub and discovers a dark secret within its basement - Baghead - a shape-shifting creature that will let you speak to lost loved ones, but not without consequence.


Right off the bat, Baghead commits the one cardinal sin that the horror community hate to see – it shows it's monster too early on. Not only is 'Baghead' unleashed during the first act of the film, but is even featured in the trailer. This means that the movie loses it's shock factor and many of it's scares, as audiences know what to expect when heading in. The fear of the unknown is one of the most effective traits of the horror genre, but Baghead seems to ignore this. It certainly has a few jump scares along the way, the dingy pub basement is suitably eerie and Baghead is undeniably creepy in appearance, but there is no element of surprise to shock viewers which hinders enjoyment. As soon as the monster is revealed, the movie loses a lot of it's fear factor, and unfortunately for Baghead, this occurs during the first act – if you've seen the trailer, it's even sooner than that. Anne Muller's physical performance as the titular villain works well, and will definitely send a shiver down your spine. The horror aspects are good, but they're not great.


Freya Allan proved her talent when starring in The Witcher, and Ruby Barker shines in Bridgerton. The movie also stars Jeremy Irvine of Mamma Mia 2 and War Horse fame, as well as Trainspotting and Harry Potter alumni Peter Mullan. The cast are competent enough here, and they're all enjoyable enough to have on our screens once again, but none come close to giving career best performances. Allen and Barker are standouts due to being our two leading ladies, and they are fun to follow. Their bond isn't the most believable at times, and the characters don't have enough development to allow their talent and range to come through. Allen's Iris continually makes poor decisions which often don't seem warranted, which isn't what audiences want from a potential final girl. Irvine's Neil has an interesting if predictable arc, and the script continually gives him more to do as the run-time progresses – it's just a shame we can see it coming. The performances are fine, it's the characters that lack.


It's not all doom and gloom – the premise of Baghead is certainly unique and provides many elements we either haven't seen before, or rarely see in horror. The pub setting is designed well, and it's abandoned nature adds to the eerie atmosphere. It feels dark, dingy and dangerous, creating a watch that's often unsettling and immersive. The titular witch Baghead, who is able to communicate with the dead, allows for a thorough depiction of grief as many of our characters wish to communicate with someone they've lost, despite the threat this poses. Our main character Iris needs answers, and she toys with communicating with her recently deceased Father to get them. Neil, played by Irvine, is widowed and wishes to speak with his wife one last time for closure. The themes this premise explores provides plenty to sink your teeth into, and often makes you wonder what you'd do in this situation – let the secrets stay buried with the dead, or risk your safety for the answers you've been craving? It has a satisfying climax that makes it's slow approach seem worthwhile, but it's plot does linger in places. The story might not have been sufficiently fleshed out for a feature-length film at times, as the narrative is occasionally stretched too thin. A touch more character work would've been the icing on the cake.

With it's interesting central premise and themes, decent creature design, well crafted location and good sound design to match, Baghead has the elements to create a thought-provoking horror flick. What stops it from reaching true greatness is it's lack of development and predictable plot. There's not quite enough story here to warrant a feature length run-time, and the slow pace may get to some. With a lack of scares and frequent poor decisions from our characters, many may be left with a sour taste in their mouths.


Rating Baghead



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