Review: Chad Crawford Kinkle Presents A Demonic Daydream in DEMENTER

It’s been six years since Kinkle’s debut feature Jug Face slowly crept it’s way into the horror scene, well before A24 and IFC had taken over as the dominators of slow building dread, and gave us an oddball tale that took it’s time with it’s storytelling and was ultimately one of my favorite genre films of the year. Now, Kinkle is finally back with Dementer, and it’s proof positive that he still knows how to hold the speedometer near the redline, throttling the nerves of viewers the whole way through.

Katie (Katie Groshong) is basically deprogramming herself from a backwoods cult that she has escaped. She’s trying to adjust back to reality and change her life around so she takes a job in a special needs adult home as a caretaker. She soon fears that one of the residents is in danger and slowly starts relying on cult practices to try and save her.

Kinkle is keep close to his roots here, using a camera style that seems close to the chest, often seeming to ride the shoulder or side of our lead. It keeps things tense, even claustrophobic, even in moments of relatively normalcy. By riding the fringe of the bodies in the frame, or a three quarter view from the waist up, it’s almost as you can feel the pulse of Katie throughout the film, ratcheting up as the runtime carries on.