“Lilith” is a new horror anthology, inspired by the legend of the iconic demon, which features segments about men being punished for the abuse of women.
I’m just going to admit it, right here and right now. Anthologies are growing on me.
I know, I know. I’ve always been vehemently against them, even to go as far as to avoid a film once I found out it was anthology. But they’re popping up more and more, and since I have started doing reviews, I’ve become much more open to them.
And I like them. Like almost a lot now. This new love of anthologies is why I was honored to get an advance screening of the new Alex T. Hwang flick, Lilith, a collection of intertwined stories focused around the titular demon herself, the most notorious demon in Jewish tradition.
In some sources, Lilith is conceived of as the original woman, created even before Eve. But she was cast out of Paradise for defying the patriarchy. Lilith means ‘the night’, and she embodies the emotional and spiritual aspects of darkness: terror, sensuality, and unbridled freedom. In modern times, she’s become something of a feminist icon.
Thus, it’s appropriate that this female-centric film follows the demon as she punishes the men who have hurt the women in their lives — dispensing bloody and violent justice to men committing varying degrees of sin, ranging from infidelity and betrayal to murder.
The film is told in four segments, each portraying men behaving badly, with Lilith showing up in one of her many forms to dish out demonic retribution.
The first segment focuses on a married male teacher’s affair with his underage student and the consequence of their extracurricular activities. The second segment is about a bitter and angry elderly man who has lost his wife, and the lengths he will go to be reunited with her. The third tale is about a sex-addicted man who seeks the affection of another woman while his wife is at a church retreat. And the final segment is about a particularly nasty serial killer on the hunt for his next victim.
Each segment is connected, with the same cop investigating the murders, and searching for answers from one of the forms of Lilith (Felissa Rose – Sleepaway Camp) in between stories.
While some segments are stronger than others, that’s a risk you run when making an anthology. Lilith may have its flaws, but it’s pretty solid as a whole.
Except for the painted on hair. That has to go.
Directed by Alex T. Hwang (all segments), and written by Hwang, Richard J. Aguirre, Paul McFall, Anthony Werley, Lilith boasts a great soundtrack by John DeYoe and Richard Trejo, and amazing cinematography by Cesar Withingham.
Now let’s talk about the stellar cast. This film has a plethora of indie darlings, including Jennifer Nangle, Devanny Pinn, Lara Jean Mummert, and Charles Chudabala. But it also includes horror favorites Felissa Rose, and Vernon Wells. And they all fit together and work off each other to create a very watchable and enjoyable horror film.