Macabre…ish Horror Review: Knocking



Knocking, 2021/ 78 min

Swedish title is Knackningar



Molly (Cecilia Milocco), gets the green light from her doctor, Kristoffer (Kristofer Kamiyasu) to leave an in-patient facility where she was a resident. She boards a bus and heads to her new home. After meeting the super, Peter (Krister Kern), she unpacks and she mourns. That night, the tapping starts, knocking can be heard from her upstairs neighbor’s flat.


She goes upstairs and meets the neighbor, Kaj (Ville Virtanen), who seems to not know what she’s talking about. He suggests someone might be doing renovations and closes the door. So Molly returns to bed and tries to sleep but the knocking keeps her awake.


The next day, her doctor, Kristoffer, calls her and asks about her plan for the day. He calls every morning. Afterward, she goes out and tries to return to life and normalcy. And that evening the knocking starts again, suddenly Molly notices a rhythm, it could be morse code. So she returns upstairs and asks another neighbor about the knocking. She’s convinced someone needs help. But no one is particularly worried.


The night after, she calls the police after she sees a man pulling a screaming woman into the building. But the pair say nothing is wrong, plus Molly thinks the woman might be the one knocking on her ceiling. She invites the police in to listen for it but nothing happens. But later, the stain that she previously cleaned off the ceiling has returned but it’s worse. Then she sees a man jump off of his balcony and when she goes down to see if there’s a body, there isn’t.


The knocking also returns. So Molly tries to decode it. She covers the wall with newspapers trying to work it out. Then she hears a woman’s cries coming through a vent and once again she calls police but they don’t believe her. When she goes through the neighbor’s garbage and finds a bloody pair of pants. Molly walks directly to the police department but they tell her to wait.


Molly is starting to worry about her mental health again. Now she’s not so sure if what she’s experiencing is real.


But that night, she hears clear as day, “Please let me out!” and running. Once again she goes upstairs to confront her neighbors. But they think she’s crazy. Molly forces her way into one of the mens’ apartments and demands a locked door to be opened. She threatens the men with a knife until he opens it. And she’s right, someone is in there. It’s not what she thinks though. And the police return her to the ward.


While there, Molly, requests her doctor, Kristoffer, but she is told that no one there has that name. They get her a cot, she is in residency again. But that night, there is knocking above her head, so she leaves and runs back to her apartment. Molly gets dressed, has a drink and goes to bed, then an arm encircles her.


In the morning, she opens her eyes, and above her head is a giant pool of blood and that godforsaken knocking starts again. But this time with crying. Molly is starting to crack and lights a cigarette to settle herself, soon, all around her are flames. And a fire fighter is lifting her up.


After she’s carried outside and worked on. On the radio, we hear the building has to be evacuated and someone finds a secret in a man’s apartment, chained to a wall.



This Swedish film was directed by Frida Kempff. This is a pretty short slow burn of a movie that feels longer than it is. This movie is disturbing and it does a good job with tone and feel. Us, the viewer really got a strong sense of Molly’s mental fragility and confusion. Her grappling with reality while deep in mourning. There were times where I just didn’t know if it was all in her head or not. This movie is well done!