The 18 best films about sects in history

Regardless of whether they are centered on the cult. And adoration of supernatural entities or whether they revolve around a more earthly and mundane central figure -although, not least, less creepy-. We share best films about sects in history. The dark world that surrounds the sects, their rituals and their Intricate has always been a perfect material to articulate some of the best stories of terror and suspense that the history of cinema has given us.

Taking advantage of the premiere of ‘Hereditary’ and the controversy that has surrounded. In my opinion, masterful debut in the feature film of Ari Aster. Is the ideal time to compile in a selection that runs through different eras. And styles which, under my point of view, are the 18 best films about sects in history.

Here are the best films about sects in history

‘The seed of the devil’ (‘Rosemary’s Baby’, 1968)

best films

Cast: Mia Farrow, John Cassavetes, Ruth Gordon, Ralph Bellamy, Sydney Blackmer

‘The seed of the devil’ is one of the best films that exist in many categories: it is one of the best works of the director Roman Polanski, one of the best horror films of all time and, of course, one of the best works about sects never filmed. The oppressive and unhealthy satanic nightmare bottled up in the Dakota building into which Rosemary is immersed converges with an exploration of the terrestrial terrors of a new mother-to-be in a simply brilliant exercise. It is one of the best films about sects in history.

‘The Wicker Man’ (‘The Wicker Man’, 1973)

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Cast: Edward Woodward, Christopher Lee, Britt Ekland, Diane Cilento, Ingrid Pitt, Lesley Mackie

Taking as an excuse an investigation about a missing girl, ‘The Wicker Man’ takes Sergeant Howie from Scotland Yard to the island of Summersile; a bucolic framework in which the director Robin Hardy develops an interesting and terrifying study on faith, religions, the direct confrontation between these and their effects on society and people. Thus, the strictest Catholicism will be swallowed up by the peculiar rituals of a sect in a film that has deservedly acquired the status of a cult piece and that has the appearance of a Christopher Lee, as always, unpayable.

‘Satan’ (‘The Black Cat’, 1934)

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Cast: Boris Karloff, Bela Lugosi, David Manners, Julie Bishop, Egon Brecher, Harry Cording

Gathered under the direction of a classic like Edgar G. Ulmer, two horror titans like Boris Karloff and Bela Lugosi shared the screen with David Manners and Julie Bishop in this Universal production based on a story by Edgar Allan Poe. A film eclipsed in some way by the big productions of monsters of the producer, but with enough flashes of brilliance to be considered one of the great, and not only for its tremendous interpretive duel but for its formal benefits and its treatment canon of Satanism on the big screen. This is the best films about sects in history.

‘The Sentinel’ (‘The Sentinel’, 1977)

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Cast: Cristina Raines, Chris Sarandon, Burgess Meredith, Arthur Kennedy, Ava Gardner, Eli Wallach

Although it has not transcended to the same levels as cult classics of the time with which it shares genetic code such as ‘The Exorcist’ or ‘The seed of the devil’, ‘The Sentinel’ is among the great satanic horror tapes of all times. An exercise to vindicate with really overwhelming passages, an impressive cast -including luxury extras like Christopher Walken, Tom Berenger or Jeff Goldblum- and a typical game between the paranormal and the psychiatric that works like a charm.

‘The invitation’ (‘The Invitation’, 2015)

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Cast: Logan Marshall-Green, Michiel Huisman, Tammy Blanchard, John Carroll Lynch, Mike Doyle, Emayatzy Corinealdi

One of the great surprises that have been enjoyed during the last years at the Sitges Festival -where the Best Film Award was won in 2015- was this fantastic ‘The invitation’; an outstanding thriller signed by a Karyn Kusama who plays with mastery with paranoia, intrigue and point of view to shape an exercise as austere as effective. Rare atmospheres and a feeling of constant bewilderment for a feature film that culminates with a final turn of those who invite to applaud with complicity.

‘The bride of the devil’ (‘The Devil Rides Out’, 1968)

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Cast: Christopher Lee, Charles Gray, Nike Arrighi, Leon Greene, Patrick Mower, Gwen Frangcon Davies

How could it be otherwise, one of the great masters of terror as Terence Fisher has in his prolific filmography with one of the best feature films about sects of all time: ‘The Bride of the Devil’. This Hammer production starring Christopher Lee and written by Richard Matheson from the original text by Dennis Wheatley splurges classicism and narrative skill in equal parts; giving the respectable a good selection of impeccable moments in visual terms and equally disturbing.

‘Night of the devil’ (‘Night of the Demon’, 1957)

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Cast: Dana Andrews, Peggy Cummins, Niall MacGinnis, Maurice Denham, Athene Seyler

Master Jacques Tourneur, who masterfully and equally genres as disparate as adventure, western or noir, also had his golden moment in the subgenre of the sects with ‘The Night of the Devil’: a suffocating account in key satanic starring a brilliant Dana Andrews in the skin of a psychologist, skeptical of manual, commissioned to investigate a death related to a cult. An exceptional work in multiple aspects that reaffirms the filmography of the Parisian director as one of the richest in history. It is one of the best films about sects in history.

‘Red State’ (2011)

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Cast: Michael Parks, John Goodman, Melissa Leo, Kevin Pollak, Michael Angarano, Kerry Bishe

Suddenly, the idea of thinking about Kevin Smith directing a thriller seemed strange and unflattering. This is why the contact with ‘Red State’ was even more satisfying and surprising; because the director of ‘Clerks’ managed to shape a wild and enervating story, narrated without any kind of concession and starring an immense Michael Parks in his role as a sectarian leader based on Fred Phelps, head of the well-known ultra-religious group as the Westboro Baptist Church. Chilling and not exempt from that own acidity of the director.

‘The Sacrament’ (2013)

best films

Cast: Amy Seimetz, Joe Swanberg, Kate Lyn Sheil, AJ Bowen, Kentucker Audley, Gene Jones

Director Ti West, after hallucinating many with his fantastic ‘The House of the Devil’, surrounded himself with several of the mumblecore movement’s regulars to give shape to this film found footage indirectly inspired by the sectarian massacre of Jonestown. An excellent exercise of suspense that unhurriedly develops the investigation of the filmmakers’ team, leading to exploding in a third act capable of destroying the nerves of the most seasoned spectator; demonstrating that the found footage, if used intelligently, can give a lot of itself. This is the best films about sects in history. Keep reading- 15 free marketing tools for Instagram

‘V / H / S / 2: Safe Haven’

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Cast: Fachry Albar, Hannah Al Rashid, Oka Antara, Andrew Suleiman

It may be a bit strange to find a segment of a film with an anthology format of short films such as ‘V / H / S / 2’ in a list of these characteristics, but the piece that Gareth Evans signed with Timo Tjahjanto for the second part of the indie horror franchise deserves an ovation. With all the nerve and dynamism showed by the action film specialists, Evans and Tjahjanto immerse us in an insane and violent passage of terror through the eyes of a team of documentary filmmakers who shoot a documentary about an Indonesian sect. Brutal.

‘Sound of My Voice’

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Cast: Christopher Denham, Nicole Vicius, Brit Marling, Avery Pohl, Richard Wharton

Written and starring the muse of contemporary indie sci-fi Brit Marling -‘The OA ‘,’ Another Earth ‘- and directed by her regular collaborator Zal Batmanglij, ‘ Sound of My Voice ‘proposes a different approach and, in a way, unique, to the subgenre of the sects. Halfway between the thriller, the intimate drama and science fiction, the restrained and austere feature film explores the influence of this type of groups on people plunged by personal tragedy while not afraid to provide the typical philosophical point of view of the productions of Marling and company.

‘The infinite’ (‘The Endless’, 2017)

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Cast: Aaron Moorhead, Justin Benson, Tate Ellington, Callie Hernandez, James Jordan, Lew Temple

Since debuting with the intelligent metaphillic rarity ‘Resolution’, the duo composed by Justin Benson and Aaron Moorhead pointed to some ways that confirmed with the beautiful ‘Spring’ in 2014. Three years after his ‘Before the dawn’ in a monstrous key, the Americans have returned with an amazing Lovecraftian nightmare enveloped by a most peculiar tone – in which there is room for suspense and comedy – and which supplies its logistical deficiencies with an amazing intelligence and an office to fall on. Be very careful, because if you have enjoyed your first job, this ‘The Infinity’ earns many integers.

‘Martyrs’ (2008)

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Cast: Mylène Jampanoï, Morjana Alaoui, Catherine Bégin, Robert Toupin, Patricia Tulasne

One of the best and wildest feature films that gave us the wave of extreme French terror known as nouvelle horreur vague was this ‘Martyrs’, directed by Pascal Laugier. A piece of cruelty and violence not suitable for the most sensitive stomachs. And minds that find the justification of their images in a sect delivered body. And also soul to torture to try to respond to one of the issues. That has plagued the human being since time immemorial.

‘Baskin’ (2015)

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Cast: Muharrem Bayrak, Mehmet Akif Budak, Fadik Bülbül, Mehmet Cerrahoglu, Elif Dag

It is somewhat complicated to describe ‘Baskin’; the amazing debut of the Turkish filmmaker Can Evrenol in the feature film. Perhaps it would be more appropriate to make an enumeration of the most recognizable referents of the film. And that oscillates between iconic figures of the terror scene as John Carpenter, HP Lovecraft. And a Clive Barker of which ‘Baskin’ inherits that mystical and fleshless violence that we could enjoy with ‘Hellraiser’. An explosive cocktail, stylized and enigmatic, with a remarkable formal treatment and a unique atmosphere.

‘Kill List’ (2011)


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Cast: Neil Maskell, MyAnna Buring, Harry Simpson, Michael Smiley, Emma Fryer

Before dazzling with his ‘High-Rise’ and signing the estimable ‘Free Fire’. Ben Wheatley already proved to be one of the most special. And unique authors of recent times with his first works. Among them, this ‘Kill List’ stands out; a suffocating, complex and very uncomfortable psychological thriller that flirts with terror. And culminates with a third act that leaves no one indifferent. And that is able to elicit love and hate in equal parts. This is the best films about sects in history.

‘Martha Marcy May Marlene’ (2011)

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Cast: Elizabeth Olsen, Hugh Dancy, John Hawkes, Sarah Paulson, Brady Corbet

This impressive, overwhelming and contemplative debut, starring a splendid Elizabeth Olsen. And cataloged by many as a sort of hybrid between the works of Alfred Hitchcock. And Michael Hanek was deservedly praised at festivals and awards ceremonies in 2011. The story of a woman who returns to ordinary life after leaving a sect. And the consequences that these have left in her mind. Serves as an excuse to give shape to a disquieting character portrait. And a strong psychological depth directed with an enviable good taste.

‘The Lords of Salem’ (2012)

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Cast: Sheri Moon Zombie, Christopher Knight, Dee Wallace, Clint Howard, Udo Kier

The spiritual heiress of Roman Polanski’s ‘The Seed of the Devil’, this ‘The Lords of Salem’. The sixth work of the musician turned director Rob Zombie, raises hatreds and passions equally. His lysergic approach to satanic terror almost linked to video art in some of his passages. Gives shape to an exercise in a surrealistic and blasphemous atmosphere. That, without any intention, has become one of the most relevant exercises of the last genre. times. It is one of the best films about sects in history.

‘Hereditary’ (2018)

best films

Cast: Toni Collette, Gabriel Byrne, Alex Wolff, Milly Shapiro, Ann Dowd

Little can we say at this point that it has not already been said that many of us categorized. As one of the best horror films of all time. And it is that the unhealthy descent into the infernos of the family protagonist of ‘Hereditary’ not only constitutes. One of the most terrifying experiences that have been experienced in a movie theater. But culminates with a spooky end of the party. In which the Most mundane terror and the supernatural embrace in a perfect demonic cocktail.

As always, it should be noted that this selection has been made based on my personal preferences; but since everyone has their own files, their phobias, and their particular tastes. We invite you to tell us in the comments which films you consider to be the best films about sects of all times.

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