Day 10 of my #31DaysOfHorror carries, and as always, feel free to play along with me on Instagram with the tag #BarleyDoesHorror, and please feel free to leave me any comments or recommendations you’d like to!
Alright, so this one is kind of a strange one. First of all, the movie seems to be being marketed as “The Devil’s Hand” but the opening credits of this one and the other 80% of the advertising call it “Where The Devil Hides”. I do like the latter better, but it can be a little bit confusing if you’re looking to watch this. Anyways, for the purposes of this review we’re going with “Where The Devil Hides” and that’s going to be that. Cool? Cool.
When young girls start to go missing within a religious cult, older followers fear a long-told prophecy while the younger members suspect abusive elders are killing them off.
So, this movie may not be the strongest entry in my #31DaysOfHorror, but I’m sure it will prove to be far from the weakest. It sets up as a pretty by-the-numbers movie about Satan and possession. However, as the story continues, it starts to unfold in genuinely surprising and interesting ways. The twists and turns the plot takes really do make you wonder what the end result is going to be, and for awhile I will admit I was pretty sure I had the whole movie pretty figured out. I was wrong, and the ending was made all the more effective by that.
The actors in the movie are pretty good, there aren’t really any dynamite performances or anything, but they certainly do a pretty excellent job with the script they’re given and the story they are living in. Rufus Sewell (Dark City) is very enjoyable and charismatic as he usually is, and Jennifer Carpenter (Quarantine) is, as always, teetering very close to being insufferable. There is also a pretty solid performance from Colm Meany (Con Air), and Alycia Debnam Carey (Into The Storm). There isn’t anyone in the movie that does an exceedingly bad job, the only real hindrance to their performances, really, is the shortcomings of the script.
While the story is pretty interesting as a whole, it’s not presented in the best way, and probably could have benefited from a better writer. Even so, I really don’t fault the movie that much. It does a pretty good job and tells a pretty interesting story despite it’s issues. It’s also not a bad example of a mediocre director working with a script that could have had a bit more potential than we saw on screen. The movie was written by Karl Mueller, who recently wrote a movie that I really enjoyed called Mr. Jones. The director on the other hand, Christian E. Christiansen, gave us the 2011 snooze The Roommate. So, that’s not exactly a match made in heaven, at least as far as I’m concerned.
As I mentioned, the movie does deliver some pretty clever twists and turns, and really does effectively make you believe that something a bit more real-world is at work. It feels like a slasher movie, then a drama about abuse in this community, and takes a turn that i didn’t necessarily expect. It does this all without much in the way of extreme violence, scary voices, or really jump scares at all. It sets up the community of New Bethlehem really well, but doesn’t deliver all it could have in the end.
If you’re looking for a movie about a cult, or an isolated community, or something along those lines, I have to recommend Ti West’s “The Sacrament” or even checking out The Last Exorcism, hell why not check out the recently reviewed Asmodexia? This one is fine, and not a waste of time, but it really doesn’t deliver anything special in the end.
Final Grade : C+