‘The Damned’ Review: A Chilling Thriller That Explores Paranoia and Superstition

A chilling horror-drama set in a 19th-century fishing village, Thordur Palsson’s “The Damned” delves into Icelandic folklore to weave a tale of fear and regret. The story follows young widow Eva, who must make tough decisions when a sinking ship nearby sparks a debate on whether to launch a rescue mission. As tensions rise and guilt takes hold, the villagers grapple with the supernatural forces that haunt them, blurring the lines between reality and imagination.

Eva, played by Odessa Young, is tasked with overseeing her late husband’s fishing boat, a responsibility that pits her against the town’s fishermen. With icy waters and snow surrounding the village, every choice becomes a matter of life and death. As the villagers face the dilemma of aiding the survivors of a capsized foreign boat, their moral compass is tested, leading them down a path of superstition and dread.

The film’s eerie atmosphere is heightened by the cinematography and score, which build tension and suspense throughout. However, the repetitive nature of the jump scares and supernatural elements detracts from the overall impact of the story. Despite the captivating performances and thematic depth, “The Damned” struggles to maintain its momentum, ultimately losing steam in its climax.

Despite its flaws, the film remains a haunting exploration of guilt and responsibility, anchored by Young’s compelling portrayal of a woman haunted by her choices. As the line between reality and nightmare blurs, “The Damned” offers a chilling glimpse into the dark recesses of the human psyche.