What do you get when you take a poorly functioning middle-aged man and have him spend the night with a dominatrix? You get On The Edge.
We recently published a post in which we discuss the new movie that the Soska Sisters have produced, and you can find it here. On the Edge is a horror film about torture that has an erotica-themed plot following for the majority of On the Edge. This theme follows throughout the majority of the film, it may be hard for some to engage the film due to some of the sensitive topics on display in the Soska Sisters latest film.
In addition to co-writing, co-directing, and co-producing the disturbing psychological thriller On the Edge, twin sisters Jen and Sylvia Soska both star in complex leading roles in this unsettling film. Along with a talented ensemble cast including Aramis Sartorio, Ola Dada, Andrea Jin, Brianna Finn-Morris, and Alanna Finn-Morris, the film also features compelling performances from Ivan Decker, Mackenzie Gray, and Sophie Buddle. The creative and multi-talented Soska sisters worked tirelessly as producers on this unique and impactful production, collaborating with other acclaimed producers such as Glenn Burchnall of Cathasaigh Productions, Luna Wolf of Disturbia Films, and Kevvy of GothMamba Productions.
It is challenging to put into words the unyielding cruelty and torture that the character Peter (played chillingly by Aramis Sartorio) is subjected to at the hands of the sinister and manipulative Mistress Satana (played mercilessly by Jen Soska) during the first half of On The Edge. This includes extreme and prolonged humiliation, degradation, and psychological abuse of the highest order. For at least the first hour, the difficult-to-watch scenes are reminiscent of an intensely dark and twisted female-dominated adult film.
The cold and calculating dominatrix has sinister and manipulative plans in store for Peter and will stop at absolutely nothing to accomplish her aim and break his spirit. The helpless Peter is subjected to an array of psychological and sexual torments right from the unsettling onset of this film.
After Peter has been subjected to a variety of mentally and physically scarring tortures for the better and more unforgiving part of an hour, the film finally begins to show him experiencing disturbing and fragmented flashbacks of traumatic events from other times in his life, including a swing set in a park from his childhood and a teddy bear, among other haunting images. These fragmented flashbacks are pivotal to eventually figuring out the true sinister nature of the film, even though you may dread the dark thoughts you are left thinking about Peter’s past and what has brought him to this point.
On The Edge is a film that crawls under your skin and stays with you whether you want it to or not.
After the first harrowing and unforgiving hour of the film, there was a pivotal shift in the sinister narrative and tone; it went from being centered around extreme physical and psychological abuse to incorporating a surreal and psychedelic experience for the character Peter. This is because the manipulative Mistress Satana had cruelly poisoned Peter’s drink, which had been provided as a warped prize for withstanding her intense dominance and torture up to that point.
She begins to speak in a demonic, otherworldly voice, letting the helpless Peter know in no uncertain terms that she is something much more malevolent and sinister than merely what he had initially hired her to be. While engaging in this sacrilegious conversation with Peter and subjecting him to her twisted mind games, it becomes clear that Mistress Satana has a more ominous agenda and other disturbing plans in store for him.
Peter descends further into a living nightmare as his psychedelic experience progresses, all while still being at the mercy of Mistress Satana. However, these surreal scenes also provide fragmented insights into Peter’s traumatic childhood memories and past torments that have shaped him into the person he is today and led him to Mistress Satana. Peter’s hellish journey of psychedelic madness and past terrors colliding all come together in a climactic final act of the film.
If I continue in depth, I will completely ruin the unsettling experience of the movie for you by giving away too many details of the sinister storyline and shocking events that follow. There are a few compelling things I would want to say about this impactful film, the majority of them concern the overall high quality and unique nature of the production.
Though I have enjoyed intense psychological thrillers like Hostel and some of the over-the-top pseudo-sexual shock films from the 1980s and 1990s, I have truly never seen anything quite like the film On The Edge. It was immensely intense and disturbing to watch, but I also felt compelled to see how it would all play out in the end. By the time the film concluded, it revealed a very surprising meaning and multi-layered storyline that leaves the viewer thinking in so many different ways.
To the best of my knowledge, this motion picture was not marketed as a B movie, and it likely could have been at minimum an A- or at worst a B++ film if not for some sound issues; it seemed as though the microphones used in filming were misplaced at times, giving the whole film an often hollow, difficult to hear audio as if listening to someone on a poor speakerphone connection. At the very least, I would have appreciated if they had improved and sharpened the audio with additional software and post-production.
In the end, I thought the film was a story of deep redemption and overcoming trauma, and I would highly recommend it to anyone who enjoys the psychological thriller genre and more unsettling fare. This movie was like nothing else and not bad by any stretch of the imagination, but it was intensely different from most standard films. And in this case, different is actually a good thing – something fresh, unique and impactful. Possibly, it seems, there is a place for more unsettling and thought-provoking entertainment that pushes boundaries in the functioning of a progressive society.
Check out the trailer below.
The prestigious FrightFest Halloween horror film festival in 2022 was the venue selected for the international debut and premiere of the unsettling psychological thriller On The Edge (2022). Following its successful world premiere, the impactful film was also showcased at the acclaimed Monster Fest horror film festival in Melbourne, Australia.
I am uncertain at this point regarding exactly when this unique and unforgettable film will be made available for rental, purchase or viewing via various video-on-demand platforms and services or in a physical home media form. However, as soon as On The Edge is released and accessible in any official capacity, I will make sure to provide an update and let you know all about how and where you can experience this memorable, thought-provoking work of surreal psychological terror for yourself.
The Soska sisters have crafted a film in On The Edge that seems destined to become an unsettling cult classic, gaining more fans and notoriety over time through word of mouth and home media releases. For those open to an unusual, intimate and psychologically confronting cinematic experience, this film will likely resonate and linger in the mind and stay with the viewer long after witnessing its surreal descent into madness and human trauma. On The Edge is a unique, unclassifiable thriller and a testament to uncompromising creative vision.
I hope I have provided an enhanced and compelling preview of the unsettling nature and quality of On The Edge without revealing too many details that would spoil your experience of discovering this impactful and unforgettable film. My aim was to give you a sense of what is in store with this production while still keeping much of its sinister surprise and twisted revelations intact should you choose to subject yourself to a viewing of On The Edge. I wish you a pleasant, thought-provoking journey into madness and all the psychological terrors that await. You have been officially warned!
Updated: June 1st, 2023
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