Emma Tammi’s The Wind is a tight little spookshow that doesn’t necessarily break any ground, yet manages not to be quite as generic as its title. In the American West of the 1800s, Lizzy (Caitlin Gerard) is a settler who begins to sense that unsettling things are happening on her particularly windy stretch of the prairie. Lizzy’s often-erstwhile husband Isaac (Ashley Zukerman) thinks she’s imagining things, but those things get stranger still after peculiar new couple Emma (Julia Goldani Telles) and Gideon (Dylan McTee) move in nearby.
A sort of an oater version of The Witch — complete with a sinister goat! — The Wind is less about its narrative, the timeline of which is deliberately jumbled, than about the mood and the environment. There are jump scares and bits of gore, but much of the terror is conveyed via post-production sounds that denote a much stronger wind than the barely rustling trees demonstrate. But Gerard’s fully committed lead performance makes it believable, and you can’t go wrong with a well-executed “there’s something out there in the dark” story. The Wind also includes one of the genre’s most welcome tropes: the protagonist discovering a book in the second act that explains or at least gives context to the supernatural occurrences. After that, any horror film is a breeze.
Rated R. Opens Friday at the Alamo Drafthouse New Mission.