Movie Review: “Deliver Us From Evil”

   Once upon a time, possession films used to be a daily part of the movie industry’s balanced breakfast. 2014 has been different though. Paranormal Activity: The Marked Ones has been the only film of the Paranormal Activity franchise thus far to make less than one-hundred million in the box-office. More importantly, the film didn’t exactly receive high-marks in-terms of quality. Devil’s Due did even worse.

   The trailers came and a lot were wondering whether or not Deliver Us From Evil would be the first good possession film in a long time. (The film was directed by Sinister director Scott Derrickson, after all)

    Deliver Us from Evil is a 2014 American biopic-crime-horror film thrilled directed by Scott Derrickson. Th film stars Eric Bana, Edgar Ramirez, Sean Harris, Olivia Munn, and Joel McHale.

   The cast is noteworthy as well. Eric Bana is the leading man, known for his work in Star Trek and Hulk, as well as various other flicks. The other actors have been around as well.

    The movie is about a New York Police officer named Ralph Sarchie as he investigates a series of crimes. Basically, a lot of darkly embroidered subject-matter lining the walls in more ways than one. Along the way, he joins forces with an unconventional and bizarre priest that is schooled in the rituals of exorcism. They work together to fight against the possessions that seem to be running about the city.

    Deliver Us from Evil definitely has more ambition than any of the recent horror-films that have been coming out lately. The reason that I took the time out to see this film is because I thought it would be different from some of the slow-burning horror flicks that have cannibalized the genre. Nowadays more than even years before, it is beginning to seem like a cesspool of filler and stalling meant to induce suspense. Genuinely, that’s the last thing it does. It just feels like they are going through the motions with one-or-two occasional jump-scares.

    This film is a slow-burn as well. The difference is that there seems to actually be something hiding beneath the surface. We have seen a lot of the elements from this film before. And I do mean a lot of them.

    The difference is that it has actors and characters are worthwhile to be followed along the ride. Deliver Us From Evil brings us in for the long-haul, bringing us developed characters and an interesting story with a run-time of damn near two-hours.

      There are one or two occasional downsides. Even though the run-time is appreciated and is beneficial to the development of the characters, it definitely drags and feels like an inconsistent and disproportionate narrative. There are a few scenes where they are at a zoo, but it can only be pinpointed for leading to one-or-two things of substantial worth to the film.

    Other-wise, there is also an excessive use of jump-scares. Silence followed by a dog-barking isn’t fear-inducing, it’s nerve-racking. Although, I will admit that there are at least two jump-scares that I like which is more than I can say for most films of the same genre.

   Back to optimism, the film has capable actors that allow for the story to excel onward. It also definitely has admirable cinematography. I noticed a lot of emphasis on the score. Notably, they make reference to songs by The Doors throughout the movie. Some times, less is more, and some times, I would have preferred silence, but for others, there were classic rock-riffs that contributed to an eerie atmosphere.

    I will say that the best part of the film is that the antagonist had a “presence” which is something that is rare for possession films. The character looked legitimately creepy, and when you seen him, it meant something. He lost it towards the conclusion, however, for the moments he had it, the film excelled. (He kind-of gave me a Seven-vibe)

    I also liked the backtracking and the way that they used the aberrations as a way to further the development of the characters. They brought up the dark-histories from some of the characters.

    In conclusion, the film isn’t without its flaws. The run-time often lags and there are definitely moments that feel like “more of the same” when it comes to jump-scares and suspense. However, there is something more with Deliver Us from Evil. There is demented imagery that works very well, as well as an intriguing antagonist that may or may not lose some of his energy by the end.

    Also, the characters are well portrayed and the story definitely has something going for it. I am disappointed that other reviews have been so negative because it makes me feel like the movie wont receive the following it deserves.

    It’s based on a true-story, … but if Haunted in Connecticut can have a sequel….

Rating: 2.9 out of 5.0