Macabre…ish Horror Review: Horns
Horns, 2013/ 120 min
Local, Ignatius ‘Ig’ Perrish (Daniel Radcliffe), not only loses his girlfriend, Merrin (Juno Temple), after she’s raped and murdered, he’s also the prime suspect. Even his parents think he might be guilty but they are supportive. Residents picket in front of his house, reporters follow him around town and they all think he got away with murder.
Then the lab where samples from Merrin’s remains were held was burned to the ground, everything was destroyed. So naturally, people assume Ig did it. He is persona non grata in town but he does still have a friend in a local bartender, Glenna (Kelli Garner) and local public defender, Lee (Max Minghella), who is a long time friend and the attorney defending Ig.
After lurking on the vigil hosted by Merrin’s dad (David Morse), Ig hears himself blamed for her death. So he lashes out and tramples on the offerings and urinates on Merrin’s grave and the next day, he wakes up next to Glenna, with a pair of horns rapidly growing from his head. After interacting with her, she is acting super weird and oddly confesses to wanting to binge eat and get fat.
The horns cause people to tell him their darkest secrets and desires and if Ig chooses, he can make people act on them. So he goes to the doctor to talk about having the horns removed and witnesses the single most bizarre interaction between a patient and receptionist. And when he touches the patient to stop her, he can see her secrets.
Also, no one is alarmed by the horns and forget about them unless they are looking at them. After an odd consultation with the doctor, they plan to surgically remove them. While under anesthesia, he dreams of himself, Merrin and their friends as kids.
Ig wakes from anesthesia, with even bigger horns and an a saw still in one of them and the doctor and his assistant having sex. He apparently gave them permission while he was under. In desperation he goes to a priest for help and again, no help is found there. Just another person babbling disturbing nonsense and an offer to hang Ig.
Then he goes to his friend Lee, who can’t see the horns, Ig thinks maybe they don’t work on good people and those people can’t see them. But that’s not true.
He goes home to his mother (Kathleen Quinlan) and she can see them and she pours her heart out about how unhappy he makes her and that she doesn’t want him to be her son anymore. Heartbroken, Ig goes to his dad (James Remar). It’s not better news. He absolutely believes Ig killed Merrin and has been working behind the scenes to ‘save’ him.
Now Ig has a plan to find Merrin’s killer himself and he deals with the caravan of journalists following his every move by telling them to beat each other up. Afterward, he just goes around town asking people if they know who’s killed anyone. Starting with the local bar, who’s owner and patrons start confessing everything on their minds and committing acts they’ve always wanted to do until the bar is burning to the ground. But Ig gets a lead!
Then he flashes back to his last night with Merrin and it’s very sad.
He finds the waitress, Veronica (Heather Graham) who’s been selling lies to journalists. She’s the single biggest reason everyone thinks Ig is guilty.
It would seem a lot of people in town were in love with Merrin. And people he’s grown up with his entire life, may as well be strangers.
Suddenly snakes begin showing up and in greater numbers and size, as time goes on. Now, Ig has decided that vengeance is the right course of action, starting with the waitress.
When Ig finally finds the culprit and faces him, he sees for himself what happened. He finds out a huge secret about Merrin and has closure with Merrin’s dad and his brother, Terry (Joe Anderson) before the final showdown. It turns out the curse wasn’t a curse at all and a friend was also never a friend but a deranged frenemy.