Sony Pictures Entertainment has released a trailer for The Cleanse, a creature feature horror comedy about a spiritual retreat whose process leads to some rather unexpected results.
The movie stars Johnny Galecki, Anjelica Huston, Anna Friel, and Oliver Platt. It’s the directorial debut of Bobby Miller. Click on over to the other side for more info and to check out the trailer and a poster.
EW chatted with Galecki about the project recently. The actor is also one of the film’s producers, and first described what it’s about:
“The Cleanse is about a group of people who are unhappy in their lives. They go on one of these kind of trendy retreats that are quite the fad now, not really knowing what to expect, and not really knowing what they hope to be the result, but they want, and probably need, change in their lives. And so, they are given a cleanse on their first day, at this retreat, and what the cleanse does is expels all the toxins from your body. What they don’t know, and what they soon learn, is that those toxins form into your own personal demon, your own personal pain in an embodied form — literally.”
And what drew him to the project? All sorts of good stuff horror fans will appreciate:
“I thought the film was fun and fantastical, and I hadn’t read anything like it before. Yet, at the same time, it was very nostalgic of things that I had seen and loved growing up, like Gremlins, [and] other things that I loved as I got a little bit older, like The Brood, or even Rosemary’s Baby, a lot of [John] Carpenter films.”
Another thing horror fans will greatly appreciate is the use of practical effects in the movie:
“Early on, Bobby and Jordan Horowitz (another of the film’s producers) bonded over the idea of using practical effects. Nobody has anything against CGI as an additive. I think we all see the benefit of digital effects. But I think audiences have missed seeing these puppets, I think they miss seeing the sweat and the fingerprints. We used CGI as a sweetener, very, very subtly, in expressions in the eyes and things of that nature. Otherwise, we had real puppeteers there, whether they were under the table with their hand in the puppet or whether they were within the puppet, as the creatures grow bigger. It was a blast; it was really fun. Oddly, when you spend 12 hours a day with these puppets, they become little personalities. They just feel like fellow castmates, as absurd as that sounds.”
The Cleanse will be released in limited theaters and on video on demand services beginning on May 4th.
Johnny Galecki (TV’s “Big Bang Theory) plays Paul Berger, an unemployed, down and out, heartbroken man searching for happiness. When Paul sees an ad for a spiritual retreat promising to restart your life, he immediately signs up, hoping to cleanse himself and fix his broken life. But after only a few days, he discovers the cleanse is releasing more than just everyday toxins… a lot more. Starring Oliver Platt and Academy Award® Winner, Anjelica Huston as the leaders of the retreat, The Cleanse is a darkly humorous, weird, and soulful fantasy that examines the inner demons in all of us.