THE VIGIL is set over the course of a long, dark night in Brooklyn’s Hassidic “Boro” Park neighbourhood, following Yakov (Dave Davis, True Detective), a former Hassid, who has lost his faith, and isn’t eager to go back to the insular religious community he only recently fled. But when Reb Shulem (Menashe Lustig), a rabbi and confidante, approaches Yakov and offers to pay him to be the shomer (watching over the dead body of a community member) for a recently deceased Holocaust survivor, he reluctantly accepts the job. Shortly after arriving at the dilapidated house, Yakov realises that something is very, very wrong. This will not be a quiet vigil.
Described by Bloody Disgusting as “a fresh take on the religious/demon possession horror film”, THE VIGIL is the startling debut feature from Keith Thomas. With an unusual and evocative setting, it’s beautifully crafted, packed with fingernail-shredding scares (including a mysterious video message that’ll stand your hair on end), an ominous and eerie score, and features a standout performance from Davis as a man confronting evil. The words “You want some tea?” will never sound the same again.