Believe and The Believers

So for this post I will be covering two movies, because I literally can’t remember one of them.

Apparently I did watch Believe. Netflix says I watched it all the way through and gave it two stars.

I have no memory of this.

I just watched the trailer, I read a bunch of reviews, nope. This movie was evidently so mind-numbingly average that my brain just went ahead and deleted that shit for me to make room for useful things, like every other dumb shit horror movie I review here. Apparently it’s about a shitty teenager (see: every other dumb shit horror movie) who goes to live with his grandfather and there are ghosts and it’s lame. Also it’s from 2000, which was the single dumbest and worst-looking year for movies. I got too bored even just reading about it to fake remembering it long enough for a full post.

Whatever, fuck it, two horrors I guess.

MOVING ON to The Believers, a 1987 flick starring Martin Sheen and some other non-Martin Sheen people. The Believers capitalizes on the SATANIC PANIC, a term that I think can only be typed in all caps. For some reason, everyone in the 80s thought Satanists were out to get your kids and rape and/or sacrifice them for rituals – it started when some terrible child decided to start telling people that his teachers were satanic cultists and then all the teachers said no we’re not, your son is just an asshole WHICH IS JUST WHAT A SATANIC CULTIST WOULD SAY. The case blew up and ended up going to trial for approximately forever and ended up being the third longest/costliest trial in….California? In the United States? I know the first was the Charles Ng trial and the second was OJ. I think. (I literally just learned this fact and the details are already gone. Fuck, maybe Believe was amazing and I’m just that dumb.)

So now we have Martin Sheen and his shitty asshole kid who exemplifies for all of us the lesson already learned in Babadook which is NEVER HAVE CHILDREN THEY WILL FUCK ALL YOUR SHIT UP. Case in point: asshole kid carries around a clearly cursed voodoo-looking doll carved out of wood and decorated with beads and feathers and probably the flesh of the damned, and he legit never lets that thing go. He loves it. He is clearly the worst. Second point: kid picks up a clearly cursed shell totem from the ground when he finds it next to a dead cat. Carries it everywhere. Hulk smashes everything in the house when it goes missing. KID IS THE WORST KID. Third point: kid throws a YOU’RE NOT MY REAL MOM hissy fit at Martin Sheen’s new girlfriend and breaks more things and runs right into traffic and almost kills Martin Sheen when he tries to go save his spawn from itself. Ugh. Birth control, you guys.

But the kid being a total dick is really just the side plot of a movie about how every brown person in NYC knows ALLLLLLLL the mysticisms and practice them on white people constantly because white people are too dumb to do it themselves. A black man from Africa runs around sacrificing children and cursing random items for funsies, as I believe all Africans do? I’m pretty sure Africa is 100% voodoo and Obama birth records I think. Martin Sheen’s hispanic maid tries to save his dumb kid from his collection of cursed items, but Martin Sheen is having none of that and fires her with much shouting and the breaking of things because I guess his kid takes after his side of the family. A hispanic officer on the NYPD tries to counter the effects of the can-tell-he’s-the-bad-guy-from-a-mile-away black dude but the Evil Black Man uses his voodoo on him and he dies of snake-related complications.

So Martin Sheen clearly can’t trust any people of color, but what about his cool white buddies? His best friends who are “anthropologists” and definitely not just the kind of white people who visit Africa and come back wearing turbans and saris and sacred jewelry because they think it will make them seem interesting? His group of rich acquaintances from attending vague charity events where everyone wears the 80s-est of formal wear? His new girlfriend who is also his landlady and looks exactly like his dead wife for reasons that are never really explained?



As Martin Sheen runs around untangling who he can trust and trying not to get sacrificed/let his son get sacrificed, we do at least get to enjoy some fun cursed shit. Lots of snakes and spiders and goats and a bizarre and scary-looking talisman from every religious belief ever, plus the Evil Black Man even curses a rich white lady’s compact and she gets a CURSED ZIT when she touches up her powder. (Because even in horror fiction no one could come up with something that would terrify a rich white lady worse than a small blemish on her face.) (Don’t worry, it’s a cursed blemish, it gets cool.)

Despite all the kinda-racism and the connection to one of the absolute dumbest cases of societal panic in American history (I guess someone read the Crucible and decided “hey, let’s do that again but more 80s this time hurraaaaaay YOU’RE A WITCH”),  The Believers is actually pretty fun and fairly well-done. Martin Sheen is great and gets to shout a lot, and some of the people who aren’t Martin Sheen are pretty good too. And the final scene involving a shitload of cultists in an abandoned warehouse is fun, because…it’s a shitload of cultists in an abandoned warehouse and that’s really all you need.

The Believers gets a solid…..THREE HORRORS.

Also I’ve looked ahead and tomorrow’s movie is one I think I remember, so mazel tov for me. (I watched all this shit in 2014, everyone is lucky that Netflix keeps impeccable viewing records). In conclusion, everyone is a Satanist, stop having kids.

Believe and The Believers

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