What Reviewers Are Saying About 'Verónica'

A surprise addition to Netflix's 2018 queue of scares, 2017 Spanish horror film Verónica quickly emerged as one of the most talked-about films on the platform. Reportedly based on true events, Verónica tells the story of a young girl whose life devolves into a series of living nightmares after playing with a Ouiji board. Its inconspicuous addition to the streaming service gave the 2017 horror flick a wider release, igniting a debate on whether or not Verónica is the scariest film of 2018.

Critical consensus on Verónica, as a whole, definitely considers it to be one of 2018's better horror films. While most found the Ouiji board/possession narrative a bit tired, many critics appreciated director Paco Plaza's haunting visual touches and the performances given by the young and emerging cast. The critical reviews of Verónica below can help you decide if you consider the film to be one of Netflix's best horror flicks. If you really want to have it stick with you, just remember it is based on some real-life demonic activity.

  • 'Plenty Of Stylistic Chutzpah' - The Hollywood Reporter

    'Plenty Of Stylistic Chutzpah' - The Hollywood Reporter
    Photo: Netflix

    "The real horror in Verónica is not in the CGI visuals, or in Pablo Rosso's frantic cinematography, or in the aural bombardment of sound effects and music; it’s in the relationship between the children (who are all played with a wonderful naturalism, apparently helped along by judicious improvisation). Slowly their sister’s dark new world infects them and their innocence is destroyed, entirely plausibly: Given this pearl of a chance, the debuting Escacena seizes it with both hands, and it’s both appalling and touching to watch her psychological decline."

  • Not Necessarily 'Original' - Variety

    Not Necessarily 'Original' - Variety
    Photo: Netflix

    "The eventual visual effects-laden shocks aren’t really stirring enough to compensate for the fact that we never find out why Verónica was 'chosen,' or who her demonic possessor is. Closing text asserts this is all based on real-world Spanish police files — which may well be true, but is rendered somewhat worthless by the ubiquity of such claims in contemporary horror films."

  • 'The Spanish Answer To "The Conjuring"' - Salute Mag

    'The Spanish Answer To "The Conjuring"' - Salute Mag
    Photo: Netflix

    "But is Verónica the scariest movie of 2018? That remains to be seen. However, it is a strong contender. The more viewers look into the real story the film is based on, the more they will be creeped out once they watch it or have crippling nightmares after watching it."

  • Horror With 'A Heart' - Film Inquiry

    Horror With 'A Heart' - Film Inquiry
    Photo: Netflix

    "The demonic possession, though not particularly scary on its own, feels more pertinent when you recognize the moments when it starts to take hold. It soon resembles Verónica’s loss of control over her life, since she feels as if she has no choice but to care for her younger siblings. Plaza‘s ability to make you sympathetic to Verónica’s situation is at least part of what makes the film work as well as it does, giving it a humanity that is little-seen in this subgenre of horror."

  • 'More Than Your Average Haunted House' - IGN

    'More Than Your Average Haunted House' - IGN
    Photo: Netflix

    "I too have now watched Verónica, and I can declare handily: It's not the scariest movie ever made. It is, however, a skillfully made haunted house movie that seeks to be about more than your average haunted house movie. And while director Plaza may have more interest in his excellently creepy visuals – if you've heard about the demon in the hallway, then you know what to prepare for – he does not mishandle the film's more pertinent themes of sexual hysteria, burdened adolescence, and the death of childhood."

  • It's All In 'The Mouth' - Vulture

    It's All In 'The Mouth' - Vulture
    Photo: Netflix

    "The mouth stretch works so consistently because it escalates the terror twinge from simple shock to the threat of something unnatural. When a mousy teen girl’s mouth expands enough to accommodate a large man’s fist, you know that whatever darkness has arrived is beyond the powers of responsible adults or law enforcement to fix. And when done well, like it is in Verónica, the effect is just close enough to real that your brain accepts it as possible, and you wonder, 'Jesus, what would I even do if I actually saw that happening?!'"