No matter where you are from, the fear of losing a child can hang over your life. Once you have created life, one can not imagine the pain of seeing it extinguished. This danger hangs over Everyone Will Burn from the start of the film. Director David Hebrero takes us into the mind of a woman struggling with that issue.

For María (Macarena Gómez), the loss of her son has left her with little purpose. As she considers ending it all, she is approached by a young girl named Lucía (Sofía García) arrives, referring to María as her mother. However, within hours María realizes that Lucía is not an ordinary girl. In fact, she possesses telekinetic powers that could threaten the village. When Lucía becomes accused of killing locals, the town’s leaders threaten María and her family.

Hebrero pushes Everyone Will Burn into unique territory with its combination of melodrama and extreme imagery. He gets a huge boost from Gómez, whose performance brings a combination of intense grief and disbelief at her circumstances. Gómez plays María as a woman lost in her circumstance. She knows she must protect Lucía from the town, in part because she blames the town for her actual son’s death. Yet she also realzies that Lucía poses a threat to others. Without Gómez’s conflicted, grief-stricken, and hyper-protective performance, Everyone Will Burn would struggle to connect. Yet her ability to bring out María’s pathos becomes essential for our buy-in.

Hebrero delivers disturbing imagery through the lens of familiar ideas. The literal concept of a witch-hunt drives much of Everyone Will Burn and streamlines the plot considerably. This allows Hebrero to push the limits with the visuals during acts of violence. The horror feels indebted to films like The Babadook or Carrie, yet still feels visually unique. Hebrero frames Lucía from above to remind us that she’s childlike, but her anger and wrath comes through the screen as anything but. García’s performance contributes to the creepy vibes that permeate every sequence, but Hebrero extracts extra tension from his chosen angles.

Everyone Will Burn only loses steam with some of the narrative additions in the film’s second half. The introduction of María’s husband tracks her emotional path, but these sequences never feel as necessary as those with Lucía. The added time provides a few moments that feel essential to the found family relationship that drives the rest of the Everyone Will Burn. The movie certainly would have benefitted from streamlining this subplot rather than focusing on it.

Luckily Everyone Will Burn features a stunning performance from Gómez to keep your attention. Without her turn, especially without her chemistry with everyone on screen, the horror thriller may have struggled to make an impact. Instead, it features one of the most ferocious performances of the year and should be sought out by horror fans.

Alan’s Rating: 7/10

What do you think of Everyone Will Burn (Y todos arderán). Let us hear your thoughts in the comments below!

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