In the realm of horror-thriller cinema, “Amelia’s Children” emerges as a compelling narrative that delves into the complexities of family secrets and the search for identity. Directed by the visionary Gabriel Abrantes, this 2023 film takes audiences on a haunting journey to the picturesque yet eerie landscapes of Portugal, where the past’s shadows loom large over the present.

A Quest for Roots Turns Sinister

The story centers around Edward, portrayed with depth and nuance by Carloto Cotta, who embarks on a quest to uncover his biological roots. Accompanied by his girlfriend Ryley, a role brought to life by Brigette Lundy-Paine, Edward’s search leads him to a stunning villa nestled in the mountains of Northern Portugal. It is here that he reunites with his long-lost mother, Amelia, played by Anabela Moreira, and discovers the existence of a twin brother he never knew he had.

However, this reunion is anything but joyful. As Edward delves deeper into his family’s history, he uncovers a chilling secret that threatens to shatter his understanding of his identity and origins. The villa, with its opulent facade, hides a dark and malevolent force that has been waiting to be awakened.

A Stellar Cast Brings the Story to Life

“Amelia’s Children” boasts a talented ensemble cast, including Alba Baptista, Rita Blanco, and Beatriz Maia, each contributing to the film’s dense atmosphere and emotional depth. The performances are anchored by a strong script that weaves together elements of suspense, mystery, and the supernatural, creating a rich tapestry of intrigue and terror.

Themes of Belonging and the Nature of Evil

At its core, “Amelia’s Children” is a meditation on the themes of belonging, the inescapable ties of blood, and the nature of evil. The film explores the lengths to which individuals will go to uncover their past and the often harrowing truths that await them. It raises questions about identity, family, and the dark secrets that can define us.

A Haunting Cinematic Experience

Set against the backdrop of Portugal’s breathtaking landscapes, the film’s cinematography captures the beauty and menace of its setting, creating a stark contrast that heightens the sense of unease. The haunting score and sound design further immerse the audience in the film’s chilling atmosphere, making “Amelia’s Children” a horror-thriller that lingers long after the credits roll.


“Amelia’s Children” stands as a testament to the power of storytelling in the horror-thriller genre. With its compelling narrative, stellar performances, and atmospheric setting, the film offers a deep dive into the heart of darkness, exploring the complexities of family, identity, and the shadows that dwell within us all. As one of the standout horror films of 2023, “Amelia’s Children” is a must-watch for fans of the genre and anyone who appreciates cinema that challenges and captivates in equal measure.