My basic job description around this part of Popoptiq is to share and comment on items (trailers, posters, videos, etc) that I find interesting. I say “interesting” and not “good” because sometimes it’s an important activity to hold something up for the world to see and ask “so what exactly do you suppose they were thinking?”. Such is the case with this trailer for The Curse of Sleeping Beauty. As a culture, it feels like we’ve only recently owned up to the fact that Sleeping Beauty is a singularly messed up story. Nevermind some of the weirder older versions, unless you change a key aspect of the story, it’s always going to be a tale with some disturbing subtexts and elements. So how do you update a story like this for the modern era?
Well, if the makers of The Curse of Sleeping Beauty have anything to say about it, the answer is “make it some kind of weird, somehow videogame-y looking modern fantasy with a hunky male lead and weird artistic design, like a collaboration between Tarsem Singh and Guillermo Del Tor. But neither of them are really trying, they just pop in every now and again to make a suggestion”. I’m not sure what specifically about it makes me think of a video game, but apparently the film is at least partially inspired by Silent Hill, so I’m definitely not imagining it.
Let’s take a look at the official synopsis and see if we can figure out what’s going on here.
“Thomas Kaiser (Ethan Peck, “Eden”) inherits an ancestral mansion that has been in his family for generations — only to learn that he has also inherited an ancient curse stemming back to the Crusades. Forced into his new role as “protector” — the guardian appointed to keep the evil demons in the house at bay — Thomas teams with an ambitious local realtor (Natalie Hall, “True Blood”) and paranormal cleric (Academy Award nominee Bruce Davison, “X-Men”) to unravel the mystery of the house, while struggling to awaken the beautiful Briar Rose (India Eisley, “Underworld: Awakening”), held captive in a terrifying netherworld seen previously in his dreams.”
So we’ve got a paranormal cleric and an…..ambitious realtor……teaming with some sort of chosen one to safeguard a house full of demons that somehow involves Sleeping Beauty (Briar Rose, at least they get the name right). There’s almost an “everything but the kitchen sink” approach going on, with ghosts and demons thrown in with sleeping beauty, a house with blood-based locks and a Chosen One narrative. It’s entirely possible that The Curse of Sleeping Beauty isn’t the unholy mess its trailer makes it look like, but if that’s the case I’ll be surprised. Still, this looks like it could easily be one of those fascinating “how did this get made” kind of movies, where whatever the creators had in mind originally has gotten so lost and muddled that it becomes interesting to watch, like Jupiter Ascending or something.
Have at the trailer below and let us know what you think