Director: Scott Derrickson
Starring: Eric Bana, Édgar Ramírez, Olivia Munn
Release Date: July 2, 2014
Director Scott Derrickson knows his calling and that happens to be directing horror/thrillers films, something he's been doing for the big screen since 2005 with The Exorcism of Emily Rose. Working with horror films can be difficult, you need to find an original concept and put out a film that can actually scare the audience. Derrickson has put out three films since becoming a director and going off his last major picture, 2012's Sinister, Derrickson is heading in the right path in putting out another successful horror film. Matthew Pejkovic says, "One of the more authentically scary horror thrillers to haunt the screen
in some time, a product of smart filmmaking, intriguing premise and a great lead performance from Ethan Hawke" in his review of Sinister. Derrickson only continues this uphill trend as Deliver Us from Evil happens to be his most ambitious film to date which is based on the book Beware the Night by Ralph Sarchie.
New York police officer Ralph Sarchie (Eric Bana), struggling with his own personal issues, begins investigating a series of disturbing and inexplicable crimes. He joins forces with an unconventional priest (Edgar Ramírez), schooled in the rituals of exorcism, to combat the frightening and demonic possessions that are terrorizing their city. Inspired by the book, which details Sarchie's bone-chilling real-life cases.
What happens when End of Watch and Se7en fuses? You get Deliver Us from Evil. But the combination is not as good as those films individually. The film begins as a normal cop film about domestic violence and child endangerment but after a major plot revelation the script does a 180 and goes all supernatural. Derrickson does a good job blending a crime drama and an exorcism together. You never feel as if the film was searching for its identity while switching themes.
Deliver Us from Evil starts off with the same problem that most supernatural films have - the main protagonist, Ralph Sarchie, doesn't believe in the evil that is right in front of his face. From seeing a possessed woman who tried to kill her baby to the sounds that only he can hear. It kills a good third of the film as Sarchie remains in denial until he reaches a point where he cannot deny it anymore. But once he reaches that point the film gets interesting, Sarchie goes rogue and isolates himself from his family and co-workers.
But when it comes to the actual 'horror' of the film, you don't really get scared. In my opinion, a horror film excels when they leave the "jump and scare" tactic and use more gore and try to scare the viewers' mental. The scariest moments of the film comes from Sarchie's POV. He uses a flashlight as the only light source due to evil forces burning out all the light bulbs and even holy candles won't burn, creating a lot of the "jump and scare" reactions. To make things worse, Derrickson uses a lot of cliche horror techniques (a child's room at night, a recurring jack in the box sound, and a dilapidated basement) that needs to be retired from films... NOW! But Derrickson does know how make a lengthy exorcism scene not feel lengthy at all and does not kill the momentum of the film.
I left Deliver Us from Evil and thought that the film was good but not because of the horror in which it lacked 100%. Yes, there are scenes I might of have had only one eye opened or shouted "uhhhhh" after but at the end of the day it felt more like a cop movie with some horror aspects instead of a fusion of both with perfect harmony or a horror film with some cop aspects. This movie is worth your money but not the full ticket price, you should buy the film on DVD.
Labels: 2014, Deliver Us from Evil, DVD, Édgar Ramírez, Eric Bana, Movie Review, Olivia Munn, Scott Derrickson