Hypnotica (2023)

Turns out, mind games can be deadly!

Written and directed by A.T. Sharma and starring Adam Johnson (Yellowstone, The Outpost), Tim Torre, and a wonderfully on-point performance from Taylor Foster, Hypnotica is about the lengths one young psychiatrist (Torre) will go to save a patient (Johnson) he really doesn’t want to.  It’s all about the hippocratic oath, you know?  But what if there is something more at the center to this patient’s spiraling out of control?  Something no doctor can ever assist with?

"has a lot to say about the possible causes for the increase in mental illness throughout the world"

That’s why Mason is obsessing over Oliver’s mental wellbeing, the wildly unstable patient in his care.  Oliver feels fucked up.  He admits this with ease.  Something is wrong as he is seeing things, finds no solace in his piccolo playing, and can’t relax - ever.  Mason wants to put him under hypnosis as a last chance, but - with the clap of his hands - all Hell breaks loose as Oliver, who is estranged from his wife and family and doesn’t know how he learned five different languages or who taught him to play the piccolo, awakens and discovers just what is wrong with him.

And Mason is going to wish to hell that he never began this hypnosis session.  Full of violent imagery, a rock n’ roll swagger where anything is possible, and lots of rapid edits, the mystery deepens with each new session.  Oliver spirals into drugs and alcohol as a response and Mason can’t stop his own worries from getting the best of him. 

And it is all leading toward a demonic possession which will render the audience speechless as Mason stumbles down the rabbit hole, hears whispers, and arrives at a destination he never saw himself at, with everyone he loves at risk of this supernatural poisoning. Hypnotica (2023)

Opening with a suggestion that this case is based on actual files and closing with a quote from a Diocese appointed exorcist, Hypnotica has a lot to say about the possible causes for the increase in mental illness throughout the world.  It’s a rather sobering thought as Oliver finds himself further and further out in the abyss, unable to recover a sense of himself.  And the steps he takes next will leave everyone at risk!

Full of cool drone shots, slick edits, good suspense, and solid performances from Johnson (who goes off the rails!!), Torre, and Foster (who works each and every line into a beyond believable performance), Hypnotica has quite a lot to say in its running time.  The message is pivotal and, as I suggested, thought-provoking as it works itself into an intense showdown of wills.

Hypnotica will be available on North American digital platforms March 31 from Terror Films.

4/5 stars

Film Details

Hypnotica (2023)

MPAA Rating: Unrated.
90 mins
: A.T. Sharma
A.T. Sharma
Adam Johnson; Marisa Echeverria; Taylor Foster
: Thriller
Mind Games Can Be Deadly.
Memorable Movie Quote: "Doctor, doctor, doctor. I don't think you can make me well."
Terror Films
Official Site: https://www.terrorfilms.net/film/hypnotica
Release Date:
March 31, 2023
DVD/Blu-ray Release Date:

Synopsis: When a young psychiatrist tries hypnotism to save an unstable patient neither are prepared for the dark secrets that are revealed.


Hypnotica (2023)