SIREN follows a group of men out for a bachelor party. When a member of the group decides things need to be taken to the next level, the men go to a secret location for some "special entertainment". When the bachelor releases a demonic woman with the ability to lure men into her vicious grasp, the group must survive the night.
SIREN is by many accounts what you want out of a superficial horror film. And I don't mean superficial, necessary, in a bad way. I merely infer that the film makes no attempt to bring substance to the screen, but is out to give you a good time with some scares. The film never takes itself too seriously and never truly grounds itself. It manages to have an aura of originality and actually has quite a few redeemable qualities.
In traditional low-budget horror movie fashion, you hope to get either great acting with a great script or great scares and great effects work. Very rarely do you get both...and you hope you don't get neither. In the case of this film, you get the non-arthouse low-budget horror flick with the latter; a few good scares and some pretty fun effects work.
The creativity applied to the dark characters of the film, in particular the side-characters, is really where this film shines. These characters, which take up a relatively small amount of screentime, really steal the show. They reminded me of the less-grotesque manifestations found in Nightbreed. They have unique abilities, but aren't easily acceptable in the public eye. So they are forced to live in this tight community that operates primarily at night. I'm actually doing a terrible job of describing it...But, basically, I loved the glimpse into this otherworldly "club" and I wish that I could have seen more.
I feel like this film was giving us a glimpse into a world I want to know more of. Much like Digging Up the Marrow, we get glimpses of an intriguing universe full of mysterious evil and concealed, dark abilities. I'm left thirsty for more. And while that is partly a nod to the effectiveness of the film, it is also a detriment as it leaves the viewer wanting and feeling unfulfilled by the product that will likely never see anything resembling a franchise.
I got a bit serious over a movie that frankly doesn't have much of that pensiveness in it. SIREN is at its core a fun, dark, self-aware horror gem in the low-budget bracket. I have little issue with the film and feel it struck well where and when it could.
Horror Qualifier: 9/10
Horror Quality: 6/10
Film Quality: 4/10