Tag Archives: Polina Davydova

Podcast: Matthew Monagle on ‘III: The Ritual’

There’s a tradition at Certified Forgotten: when one of the hosts has a birthday, they get to pick the movie for that week’s episode. That’s how Matthew Monagle came to choose III: The Ritual, a 2015 horror film from Russian filmmaker Pavel Khvaleev. Come for an intimate conversation about the ravages of age in the film industry and stay for a discussion about the best Russian horror film of the decade.

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When an unknown pandemic hits their small village, young sisters Aiyia (Polina Davydova) and Mirra (Lyubov Ignatushko) put their lives on hold to take care of their dying mother. But things get even worse when Mirra takes ill too. In her desperation, Aiyia turns to family friend Father Herman (Evgeniy Gagarin) for guidance. What he teaches her – a pagan ritual for entering the dream space of a loved one – may contain the secrets needed to pull Mirra back from the brink of death, but it may also cost both sisters their lives. Equal parts folk and religious horror, III: The Ritual is a low-budget mashup of Tarsem Singh and Silent Hill for the folk horror generation.

In this short excerpt from the episode, Matthew Monagle explains why III: The Ritual steals from all the right places to leave an impression:

“It sounds demeaning to say that this feels a lot like Silent Hill fan fiction to me, but Silent Hill is such a rich fucking aesthetic that that they’ve tried to make into movies multiple times. […] People should try and rip off Silent Hill, full stop. Everybody should try and rip off Silent Hill. It fucking rules.”

The III: The Ritual episode of the Certified Forgotten podcast is now available to stream on SpotifyApple Podcasts, or the podcast platform of your choice.