American action movie junkies already know director Gareth Evans as the man who brought us The Raid and The Raid 2: Berandal, two of the most blisteringly intense action films of the last two decades, but Netflix is about to expose the director to a much larger audience. They’ve just released the first trailer for Apostle, the Dan Stevens-starring “period action horror film” that hits the service on Oct. 12, and suffice to say, it looks like one hell of a ride. Here’s your synopsis:
The year is 1905. Thomas Richardson travels to a remote island to rescue his sister after she’s kidnapped by a mysterious religious cult demanding a ransom for her safe return. It soon becomes clear that the cult will rue the day it baited this man, as he digs deeper and deeper into the secrets and lies upon which the commune is built.
In execution, that story looks like a sublime combination of The Wicker Man, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre and Evans’ own The Raid, in terms of its action sequences. It’s a bit difficult to tell if the film is supposed to be more of a horror drama or a bone-breaking actioner, but the cult setting certainly stirs up comparisons to the British classic, which starred Christopher Lee as the leader of a cult society and Edward Woodward as a police inspector looking into the disappearance of a young girl.
Moreover, it’s an interesting twist in the career arc of Stevens, who has now played a leading man in everything from Disney’s live-action Beauty and the Beast to carrying the FX series Legion. This role, however, calls to mind his unsettling (and more physically domineering) starring role as the title character of Adam Wingard’s 2014 thriller The Guest.
Apostle will premiere at Fantastic Fest this September, and hits Netflix on Oct. 12.