Well, this is one of the quickest reviews of a brand new movie I’ve done so far. I went and checked out Deliver Us From Evil today, and figured I had better get right back home and write this review.
Please know, this review WILL contain spoilers.
Why? Because it’s not a great movie but I don’t want it to be a “MOVIES I’M RUINING” post either.
Anyways, 0n with the review.
Great poster right?
Plus, an effective trailer boasting the TRUEST TRUE STORY IN THE HISTORY OF TRUE STORIES.
What’s not to love? Here’s the story :
NY police officer Ralph Sarchie investigates a series of crimes. He joins forces with an unconventional priest, schooled in the rituals of exorcism, to combat the possessions that are terrorizing their city.
With that in mind actually, I’ll say the positive things I have to say about this movie first. Number one, Joel McHale (Community) is in this movie and he is extremely likable, and is also one of the more cartoonish characters in this ‘true story’. That being said though, he’s charming and likable in this movie.
Next good thing, the scenes in this movie that are supposed to be scary, are genuinely scary. The imagery is effective, the atmosphere is intense and honestly, the movie works and delivers on the scares front. Perhaps a few more jump-scares than I prefer, but generally, the movie is dark and creepy and the frightening scenes are quite effective. The scenes in Eric Bana’s family home, with the daughter and the scratching noises, are very effective.
All of those nice things about this movie … and I have to say. It’s not very good.
The performances in the movie are jilted and flat, and Eric Bana is so insanely bland that it’s hard to care when things happen to him. Edgar Ramirez does a pretty good job, but his character is almost too over-the-top and it just doesn’t really work. Not to mention : THEY KILL THE MOST LIKABLE CHARACTER IN THE MOVIE.
That’s right, Joel McHale bites it part way through the movie. Now, his death is brutal, and violent doesn’t seem to carry any weight after it happens. Bana seems to get over it, and after he dies there is maybe one other reference to him for the rest of the movie. It just seemed like a moment everyone watching was supposed to care about, but no one in the movie did.
On that note of violent brutal death, the movie is surprisingly gruesome and disturbing for a 14A movie. There are scenes that do cause genuine discomfort and have pretty shocking violence or gore. However, when you look at it as a whole, it just feels like a band-aid to make the movie seem more edgy and interesting than it actually was.
As well, I have to give credit to Olivia Horton for her performance. It is downright terrifying despite being so obviously modeled after Linda Blair’s performance (and make up) in The Exorcist.
Overall the movie just felt disjointed, and almost like there were 2 or 3 different movies happening all at once. Now, I haven’t read the book that this police officer wrote, and I really have no plans to. In my opinion, a movie should work on its own merits anyways. This one… just doesn’t.
Not to mention, for a movie that tried to convince you that it was edgy and dark and gritty… it has a pretty lackluster and bordering on silly ending.
So, is it worth seeing it in theaters? Worth waiting for it on DVD? Something to … watch for free?
I’m certainly not going to go out and recommend you spend money seeing it. It’s just not that strong an entry, and just didn’t deliver how I wanted it to.
Those are my thoughts, what are yours? Please share.
FINAL GRADE : C