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THE QUEEN OF BLACK MAGIC (2019, IND)

Indonesian horror master Joko Anwar (Satan’s Slaves, Impetigore) has another chilling film. This time, Anwar remained in the role of screenwriter while leaving the direction to a slightly younger colleague, Kimi Stamboel, and “Queen of Black Magic” is actually a remake of the cult horror film of the same name from 1981. Mostly thanks to Anwar, horror in Indonesia has experienced a real renaissance in recent years, and this film shot in a somewhat whodunit style is one of the confirmations of that. “The Queen of Black Magic” takes place in an orphanage in an Indonesian province where the main protagonists have gone with their families.

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Anton, Hanif and Jefri grew up there before they were adopted, and some 20 years later they are all successful and relatively wealthy people. They went to the orphanage to visit the old educator Bandi, and immediately upon arrival it is clear to us that something very bad used to happen there. It will turn out that they all suppressed the old trauma and forgot how their friend Murni once disappeared there, while the teacher Mirah was declared a witch and was left to die in one of the rooms. Of course, Anton, Hanif and Jefri did not tell their families about any of this, but the ghosts of the past have now decided to pay their price, and it will be shown that the version of events they remember is actually significantly different from what actually happened once upon a time.

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Anwar continued with this film exactly where he left off with the previous two horror films, and everything was done with quality. From the story itself, which contains numerous surprises and twists and visual effects, to horror elements and creepy situations, and even the acting is surprisingly solid and inoffensive, which is rare for films, especially horror films, from such exotic destinations.

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