The jack of all trades filmmaker talks about the long process of bringing Sator to completion and the many influences behind the film’s disquieting, trance-like mood and atmosphere.
Sator is a wholly unique and captivating horror experience, one that pulls you in with its immersive and impeccable sound design along with its gorgeous yet haunting imagery.
On the surface, the film is a simple story of a young man named Adam on the desperate and obsessive hunt for a mysterious being called Sator, who has been a constant and menacing presence in the lives of his family for generations.
On the latest episode of Screen Crusades with Ryan J. Downey, the filmmaker behind the landmark folk horror project, Jordan Graham, reveals how he did everything on the movie himself – including writing, directing, editing, composing, cinematography, set design and more – a process that took several painstaking years to complete.
Through the interview, Graham talks about the real inspirations behind the film. June Peterson, who plays Adam’s grandmother, is Graham’s actual grandmother. She claims to have been hearing the voice of Sator in her head for her entire life, and views the entity as more of a guardian than a demon.
Downey and Graham also discuss the way the film creates an unsettling and trance-like atmosphere using its creeping pace and experimental sound design – all on a tightly restricted budget.
Watch the latest episode of Screen Crusades with Ryan J. Downey and filmmaker Jordan Graham below.
0:00 – Doing more with less
5:45 – Early filmmaker influences
12:45 – The critical reception to Sator
15:30 – The music of Sator
22:07 – Blurring fact and fiction with found footage
27:50 – The influences behind Sator’s atmosphere
33:35 – What comes next for Graham
44:10 – Creating film universes and Quentin Tarantino