Ashes movie poster


In theaters July 19, 2019



93 minutes

Directed by:

Starring: , , , ,

In Ashes, released to DVD and on-demand today, Aunt Marion (Melinda DeKay) is both the butt of every joke and the instigator of all things creepy, as her grown niece Ellyn (Elizabeth Keener) and nephew (Jay (Brandon Lambert) recount their childhood with her to camera for an interview on family grief. Their mean spirited pranks seem a little over the top, and Aunt Marion didn’t like them much. Ellyn has a family of her own now, daughters Camille (Angelique Maurnae) and Melanie (Yumari Morales), and her husband Duane (Jeremy Isiah Earl), and for a modern family they seem down to Earth and forthright with each other.

When Aunt Marion dies and the family unexpectantly receives her cremains in the mail, they’re at odds as to what to do, especially after prophetic dreams received from other deceased members of the family (as you do) give advice contrary to basic human decency. Nevertheless, poor decision after poor decision is made, and the family finds itself at the center of its own tale of bad luck, possession, destruction, and death.

And dude – what was the deal with Gail (Maria Olsen). She had me giggling and seriously creeped out.

This movie is by no means perfect, in fact, I would go so far as to say, it had parts that seemed not as fleshed out as the rest of the movie. However, for 93 minutes I was fully invested in Ashes. The family felt authentic, reactions felt authentic, the pacing felt real. The practical effects looked very cool and the bit with the egg slicer used as a Ouija planchette was absolutely inspired. I was confused by the “interview portions” since they felt disconnected from the main story – they propelled the narrative (sorta), but since we never saw precisely who they were talking to or why it knocked me out of the story.

Ashes is a lot of fun and as it progresses towards its climax and gets more and more bloody. That’s how you know you’re having a great time.

Ashes is Not Rated, but if I were to guess, I’d say Rated R for lots of blood, gruesome accidents, swears, airborne cremains, dead Aunt Marion, and creepy Gail. That grin alone will give you nightmares.

Ashes is currently streaming on Amazon Prime.

Ashes is streaming now on the following services:
Movie Reelist Contributor: MontiLee Stormer
MontiLee Stormer is a writer of horror, dark and urban fantasy. She’s also is a troublemaker, concocting acts of mayhem and despair for her own selfish pleasure. An avid movie watcher, she prefers horror but will see just about anything if you're buying. Poltergeist (1982) is her favorite movie and she actively hates The Shining (1980) due to its racism, misogyny, the butchering of the source material. She could host a TEDtalk on this single subject. Writing about herself in the third person is just a bonus.

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