Today’s Horror Icons: Ti West Of ‘The House Of The Devil’ And ‘The Innkeepers’

Everyone has seen “Halloween,” “Nightmare On Elm Street,” and “Friday the 13th” a million times. Throughout October, MTV Movies Blog will be spotlighting the best horror filmmakers working today, and we’re kicking off our weekly profiles with Ti West, the writer-director behind “The House of the Devil,” “The Innkeepers,” and the upcoming “The Sacrament.”

Ti West’s “The Sacrament” just played for Fantastic Fest audiences in Austin, and Magnet Releasing has already scooped the film up for a theatrical run. The found footage tale centers on a group of investigative journalists who venture to a remote commune with the hopes of reuniting family members. There, they meet a charismatic figure known as “Father,” and the trio witnesses the group’s fanaticism run amok.

The film joins West’s slate of slow-paced indie chillers that emphasize smart storytelling, atmospheric visuals, and dark twists. Several of West’s other major releases have focused on a supernatural premise — like his satanic 80’s throwback, “The House of the Devil,” or “The Innkeepers,” involving two employees at an allegedly haunted hotel — but his turn at real-life horror (also seen in his “V/H/S” segment, “Second Honeymoon”) proves he has a talent for building tension and crafting fascinating characters without relying on the usual bogeymen.

Audiences who appreciate clever, slow-burning thrills will find a lot to love in West’s catalogue. The filmmaker is leading the way for horror cinema’s next generation of directors.

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