Scott Derrickson relies on jump scares rather than originality in Deliver Us From Evil
Ralph Sarchie (Eric Bana) and his partner Butler (Joel Mchale) work in the NYPD special operations department. Thanks to Ralphs “radar”, he has a natural talent for sniffing out some of the precincts most disturbing and dangerous cases. When a series of murder investigations become connected through unexplained spiritual phenomena, Ralph must join forces with bad boy catholic priest Mendoza (Edgar Ramirez) to solve the case.
THE GOOD – CHARACTER DRIVEN STORY
Director Scott Derrickson (Sinister, Excorsisim of Emily Rose) has had a hot streak with this genre. Writing and directing interesting horror films that focus more on character rather than focusing on story and for the most part this film follows that same formula. Eric Bana’s character of Ralph Sarchie is based of an actual NYPD police Sargent who left the force after a series of events to be more involved in paranormal investigations and exceorsisims. How much is based on fact and how much is complete farce remains to be seen but it does set up a great genre mash up of a cop drama mixed with demonic horror.
THE BAD – LAME SCARE TACTICS
Although this film seems like it has a lot going for itself, Scott Derrickson (for whatever reason) decides to play it safe with his scares, relying on cats running across the screen and high music cues in order to get a reaction out of the audience. It’s also never really explained as to why these evil events are taking place. When everything just runs on the premise of “the devil made me do it”, it opens the doors for lazy writing and doesn’t make you feel very connected to the fearful atmosphere. The horror is just so on the nose and unoriginal that true scare junkies will most likely leave unsatisfied.
Deliver Us From Evil has a great concept on paper but ultimately falls flat. Relying on easy scares and tired cliches, this film just feels like you have seen it a million times before. The cat running across the screen. The hot headed police partner with a thirst for adrenaline. The flashlight that always goes OUT!
It’s also rated R so there are a couple good gross-out moments for you gore fans but Deliver Us From Evil should of just delivered US a better film instead……..CAT JUMP!