Fri, Sep 17, 2010

: Devil

The trailer and premise didn’t interest me at all (nor did M. Night’s involvement), but then I read some positive reviews and heard that the script was written by Brian Nelson, the guy who did fantastic work on Hard Candy. The kicker was that the movie was only 80-minutes and I didn’t feel like a long movie today. So I gave it a go and came home happy. It’s nothing remarkable, but a solid B- or C+. The premise is gimmicky — a group of strangers are trapped in an elevator as one by one they are murdered by the devil who is one of the group — but it surprisingly works. It’s actually impressive they are able to pull it off. However, it is a strain to do it. One of the ways the film does it is by having a great deal of the story be set outside the elevator, detailing the rescue attempt and the police detective trying to solve he murders via the elevator’s video feed. Unfortunately, that external viewpoint takes away from the claustrophobic atmosphere that I expected: this could have been a much more intriguing film if it felt more like we, the audience, were also trapped in the elevator with the tiny group and a murderous devil among us. I didn’t feel it was scary at all. (As a side note, I thought the filming of the elevator sequences was poor as there was often little indication of the size of the room. Especially late on when there are few people left and the tiny room is full of dead bodies, it should have been incredibly confining and creepy, but from the camerawork it might as well have been a spacious hotel room.) Overall, this is a gimmick film, not particularly original and though some reviews thought the resolution clever, it was predictable and nothing more than a “Ten Little Indians” rehash for me. That doesn’t negate the whole experience as there are some interesting aspects I enjoyed (the themes of crime and forgiveness are neat), but just don’t expect awesomeness.

Topic: [/movie]