One of the most notorious murders in American history was committed by the Manson Family cult. The conspiracies that followed the murderous cult post-1969 spawned many rumors, books, documentaries, and internet sleuths connecting the dots to Son – or Sons, of Sam and to the Unabomber.
In The Resurrection of Charles Manson, Director Remy Grillo, with writers Brev Moss and Josh Plasse, illustrates the underground connections of the sleepy stragglers of the Manson Family cult and their mission to conjure up their lost messiah: Charles Manson.
Let’s take a look at the poster
The Resurrection of Charles Manson Synopsis
The story surrounds a young couple hoping to create an aesthetically pleasing audition tape for an up-and-coming Charles Manson film. But when the couple chooses an eclectic desert Airbnb as the perfect backdrop, the dark events of the audition material slowly slip into their reality… Eventually, they find themselves intertwined in an occult leader (Grillo)’s sinister plot.
Tianna is a young actress attempting to make an audition tape in her shared apartment with Mitch, her boyfriend. This is the role that was meant for her: a Manson Family groupie girl who self-harms. She wants to hone in on the part, but her upstairs noisy neighbor keeps ruining her tape. Tianna persuades Mitch to get out of town for the weekend and rent a condo in the desert for $70 a night. She feels the desert setting is perfect for her to get into character and will look great for the audition.
Into The Desert
Mitch begins to notice the desert locals are a bit off, and are a bit too proud of being white. Hmm, this doesn’t make me nervous. Disturbed and off-put, he tries to blow it off and focus on supporting Tianna. He also has an agenda of proposing when the time is right. While Mitch is practicing his kneeling approach, he meets a stranger looking to spread a family member’s ashes in the desert. The nomad and Mitch talk about his vacation with Tianna and his intentions to become engaged. He shows off the ring and, after another “stay white” comment, Mitch just wants to walk away.
“Manson is Man’s Son” – Manson Family Cult
The creepy locals seem to be stalking the rental home with urgency and frequency. Mitch finds symbols drawn in the sand outside the rental. After he discovers a window is open in the back room and the ring is now missing, he goes on a late-night mission to find the local weirdo he met in the desert. Mitch locates his camper and his ring is inside, but that’s not all. Our local Caucasian enthusiasts’ intentions are revealed along with their identities. It’s the remaining Manson Family cult, and they need a vessel for their lost prophet to embody, and they’ll stop at nothing to reunite with “Charlie and Charlie’s will”
The Resurrection of Charles Manson took its time setting up what looked to be a home invasion, hostage-type plot. What actually unfolded were some foreseeable twists, and some main character backstabbing, and a cute relationship between Mitch and Tianna that is told in a rollercoaster of flashbacks that can get a little incoherent at times. The pacing was turbulent – and not the kind that holds tension. Just enough to create some foreboding misdirection in a sleight-of-hand kind of way. The Resurrection of Charles Manson felt like I was just watching things happen with no real terror or thrill, with a small reward at the end of the experience, that was just ‘neat.’
We met Frank Grillo’s character immediately in the opening credits and he’s gone until the final 20 minutes, so that was underwhelming. The rest of the cast was watchable and had some nice deliveries that highlighted Remy Grillo’s ability to direct. The desert cinematography was a treat and always fits nicely with murderous cults.
The Resurrection of Charles Manson (2023) Final Thoughts
Impactful actor performances, warm balanced desert shots, and the Manson Family macabre dynamic weren’t enough to overshadow a lack of thrills and the messy flashback highlight reel. However, I am looking forward to seeing more from the new Director Remy Grillo. You get a real sense of his passion and attention to detail, so I’m excited for him. If you’re a follower of the true crime story and history of the Manson Family, this movie jumps out.
The Resurrection of Charles Manson will be available for Digital download on May 29th. Check out the trailer below.