Asmodexia (2014)

Day 6 of my #31DaysOfHorror! Play along on Instagram with the tag #BarleyDoesHorror!

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Alright, time for a weird one. This film comes to us from Spain, and tells this story :

Five days in the lives of an exorcist (Eloy Palma) and his granddaughter (Alba), working in the Barcelona area.

This was a genuinely cool little movie. A tight 80ish minute movie, written and directed by first-timer Marc Carrete, and there is also a writing credit for Mike Hostench whose only previous writing credit is Beneath Still Waters. Anyways, the movie is short, and the story a little bit muddled. However, after movie after movie of sub-par rip offs of “The Exorcist”, I had hoped that perhaps the country that gave us [Rec] and Pan’s Labyrinth would be able to change the tide of possession horror. Frankly, the last one that I sincerely enjoyed was The Last Exorcism, the ones that have come since are typically pretty weak. What I got from this was actually pretty interesting.

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The two main actors are extremely likable, and while I thought I recognized the actress who played Alba, a quick search showed me that I really didn’t. Either way, the two of them are relatives and partners in exorcism. I won’t get too spoiler-tastic, but the movie sets up these characters really well, and ultimately the reveal is really effective as a result. Honestly, if I talk too much more about the characters, I will definitely tread into spoiler territory. So, I’ll just say that the story, and the characters are effective, and the actors are strong.

The movie does move a bit slowly, which is strange to say about a movie that is under 90 minutes, but the movie does unravel at a bit of a slow pace when it really doesn’t need to. The visuals are very creepy, and the movie doesn’t rely on jump scares to get through to you. While it’s not a masterpiece, it’s certainly a step above the last possession film that I reviewed, The Possession of Michael King, and I really did enjoy the story and how it unfolded.

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Overall the movie is creepy, well shot, and visually pretty scary. If you’re a person who hates subtitles (which you should fucking get over already) then give this one a watch, especially if you’re looking for something new to watch. There are certainly points where the movie does dissolve into a bit of a jumbled mess with too much happening, and almost a few too many characters to keep track of, but you really could do so much worse.

FINAL GRADE: C+

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