The Pact Reviews

  • In the end, like a lot of genre movies, this one pulls from different inspirations, and so weighs in, by turns, as overly predictable and satisfyingly recognizable (part of genre cinema's one-two punch).

    Manohla Dargis — New York Times

  • There's no pact in The Pact, which is indicative of this faux spooky tale's guiding illogicality.

    Nick Schager — Village Voice

  • In truth, there's nothing here we haven't seen before. But McCarthy, who also wrote the straightforward script, keeps the pace moving and the atmosphere eerie (if rarely terrifying).

    Elizabeth Weitzman — New York Daily News

  • A tightly controlled low-budget chiller whose occasional moments of unexpected special effects are set up beautifully by long periods of suspense.

    Kyle Smith — New York Post

  • Basic, efficient little horror item scares up a few little shocks, possibly enough for a modest commercial career.

    Todd McCarthy — Hollywood Reporter

  • The explanations for what has been going on are weird, fantastical and sort of reasonable, within the context of the story, maintaining the film's sense of grounded directness up to the very end.

    Mark Olsen — Los Angeles Times

  • Manages to deliver a decent combination of supernatural and practical horrors.

    Scott Weinberg

  • Nicholas McCarthy admirably tries to deliver both a terrifying tale of horror while mixing in more gritty elements, but doesn't explain much as to why.

    Matt Donato — We Got This Covered

  • Quite easily, one of the scariest films I've seen in a long while... It's a corker.

    Witney Seibold — CraveOnline

  • Debut director Nicholas McCarthy possesses a good grasp of effective, tension-building technique in this psychologically rooted chiller, in which dark, repressed memories of a turbulent childhood bubble to the surface.

    Brent Simon —

  • The film has some cheap thrills ... but lacks more sustained tension.

    Todd Jorgenson —

  • A satisfying ghost story without leaning too hard into trends. It's not a deliciously overwhelming feature, but The Pact has modest vision worth a look.

    Brian Orndorf —

  • McCarthy is clearly an economical director and what he gets on screen here - while hardly new - is still effective and occasionally creepy.

    Stephen Whitty — Newark Star-Ledger

  • The best thing The Pact has going for it is the way it manages to play its cards right, despite the fact that it doesn't have many aces up its sleeve.

    David Guzman — Film Journal International

  • More horror movies set in the 21st century ought to integrate technology into their scares as well as Nicholas McCarthy's The Pact.

    Noel Murray — AV Club

  • When The Pact descends, finally, from suggestion to explication, the scares regrettably slink away.

    Calum Marsh — Slant Magazine

  • [VIDEO ESSAY] "The Pact" is a horror movie with training wheels. It's for audiences who have never seen one before and don't want to be too scared.

    Cole Smithey —

  • At times scream-out-loud scary, with a second half that can't maintain the momentum.

    Rosie Fletcher — SFX Magazine

  • To those brave enough to stomach the horrors of the Saw series, The Pact will seem tame.

    Brigit Grant — Daily Express

  • The film cleverly exploits aspects of everyone's childhood.

    Philip French — Observer [UK]

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