At the Devil's Door

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At the Devil's Door
At the devils door poster.jpg
Teaser poster
Directed by Nicholas McCarthy
Produced by Sonny Mallhi
Written by Nicholas McCarthy
Starring Catalina Sandino Moreno
Ashley Rickards
Naya Rivera
Music by Ronen Landa
Cinematography Bridger Nielson
Edited by Bill Neil
Jake York
Production
company
Varient
Candlewood Entertainment
XYZ Films
Distributed by IFC Films
Release dates
  • March 9, 2014 (2014-03-09) (SXSW)
  • August 8, 2014 (2014-08-08) (VOD)
  • September 12, 2014 (2014-09-12) (United States)
Running time 91 minutes
Country United States
Language English

At the Devil's Door (originally titled Home)[1] is a 2014 horror film directed by Nicholas McCarthy. The film had its world premiere on March 9, 2014, at South by Southwest.[2] It stars Catalina Sandino Moreno as a woman caught in the middle of supernatural events.[3]

Synopsis[edit]

The film begins with a teenage girl (Ashley Rickards) and a boy she just met, making out on his bed. He tells her she can get $500 by playing a game. He then brings her to a trailer in the middle of nowhere to a man (Michael Massee) who performs the shell game. After the girl gets all three rounds correct, the man tells her she's been chosen, and to go down to where the roads meet and say her name (so he knows her name when he calls for her.)

Later that night, the girl is home when she hears a voice in her wardrobe closet say "come to me." She is then lifted into the air by an unseen force then thrown onto the floor.

We then meet a real estate agent Leigh (Catalina Sandino Moreno) who is trying to sell a couple Chuck (Dan Roebuck) and Royanna's (Jan Broberg) house. The couple are trying to sell the house due to being unable to pay the mortgage since Chuck got sick. During the conversation, Leigh mentions that she saw a girl inside the house and they assumed it was their missing daughter who they thought run away with her boyfriend and has been missing for months.

When Leigh goes back to the couple's house she finds Charlene, whom she then takes to her home and calls her father Chuck. Over the phone Chuck tells Leigh that police picked Charlene up at a local mall hours ago and that she is with him. Leigh looks at the files from the couple's house where she finds an article with Charlene's picture in it; named as Hannah White, she committed suicide back in 1987. Leigh notices Charlene is gone and she goes around the house to look for her. She finds her in an empty room staring into a mirror. When Leigh asks who she is, Leigh falls to the floor and her heart stops.

The next day, Leigh's sister Vera (Naya Rivera) gets a phone call from the morgue to come to identify the body of her sister Leigh, who died the day before. Later in Leigh's home, Vera finds Leigh's files from the couple's house and visits some of Charlene/Hannah's old friends. One of Hannah's old friends says that Hannah was pregnant before she committed suicide and that she wasn't herself the last few days she was alive. Also that Hannah claimed a demon was inside of her, wearing her body like a costume.

Later at Vera's loft, she is awakened by a demonic voice that says "come to me." Vera is then lifted into the air and thrown outside the window onto the roof of a car.

At a hospital, Vera wakes up and a doctor tells her she was in a coma for 8 months and was pregnant when it happened. During her ultrasound, Vera sees a demonic face on the monitor and demands an immediate C-section.

About a week later, Vera goes back to Leigh's house to gather some of her sisters belongings before leaving town.

6 years later, Vera visits a mother and her daughter (Ava Acres), which is the daughter she gave birth to 6 years before. Vera asks the girl why she was chosen and that she knows who the girl is. The girl leaves the house and Vera chases after her to an abandoned house in the woods when she captures and attempts to stab the girl. The girl's mother then finds the house and searches desperately for her daughter who she cannot find.

In a car, the little girl touches Vera's hand and says, "I knew you'd come back for me, mommy."

Cast[edit]

Production[edit]

Plans to film At the Devil's Door were first announced in 2012 under the title Home, shortly after the release of McCarthy's 2012 directorial debut The Pact.[4] Filming was completed in January 2013.[5]

Reception[edit]

The film received mixed to positive reviews from horror film critics. Fearnet called At the Devil's Door "impressive work" and remarked that "it works as a slick and admirably unpredictable whole, and it somehow seems to work as three distinct chapters as well."[6] We Got This Covered gave a mixed review, stating that the film was "a bone-chilling ghost story that I'd absolutely love to recommend, but once again I struggled to keep a constant connection to Nicholas McCarthy's befuddling screenplay, packed with exciting ideas and bright moments of sheer terror – but nothing consistently worthwhile."[7] Best Horror Movie's review said: "When you incorporate three extremely powerful performances from three extremely attractive young ladies (Catalina Sandino Moreno as Leigh, Ashley Rickards credited simply as "Girl" and Naya Rivera as Vera) you've got a very real recipe for success."[8]

EFilmCritic.com wrote: "Not all of his cast appears in every time period, but the three women at the center all give strong, interesting performances from better-than-usual material. Ashley Rickards, for instance, gets to do a lot more than just be irresponsible and then inscrutably creepy (her character's usual arc); the flashbacks show a great arc of uncertainty and regret and general breakdown. Catalina Sandino Moreno always adds a little more to Leigh than just what's in her words; for a fairly plain-spoken character, she winds up with a lot of nuance. Naya Rivera initially seems to have the simplest character in Vera but winds up with some great moments as the film goes on. They're good enough to make the end more satisfying than it initially appears after things have sunken in a bit, even if the movie does occasionally seem to be setting up something a little more grandiose."[9] Sound on Sight wrote: "Supporting the scares is a strong cast, the standout being Naya Rivera as Vera, the younger sister who refuses to start a family or get married, much to the disappointment of older sister Leigh who is incapable of bearing children. Rivera offers the most natural performance in the film, a young woman whose ideal vision of her own future is turned upside down when satanic forces take a keen interest in her family. That last point about Vera being forced to abandon her preferred marriage-free and child-free lifestyle choice is both part of the film's strength and weakness. On the one hand it makes her a more interesting character and allows for actress Naya Rivera to sink her teeth into a meaty role."[10]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "IFC Dates 'At the Devil’s Door', Formerly 'Home' (Exclusive)". Bloody Disgusting. May 29, 2014. 
  2. ^ "SXSW 2014: First Home Stills Come Home". Dread Central. Retrieved 13 March 2014. 
  3. ^ Mack, Andrew. "SXSW 2014: Your First Look At Nicholas McCarthy's Horror Film HOME". Twitch Film. Retrieved 13 March 2014. 
  4. ^ Turek, Ryan. "The Pact’s Nicholas McCarthy to Direct Home". STYD. Retrieved 13 March 2014. 
  5. ^ "'The Pact' Director's Haunted 'Home' Completed". Bloody Disgusting. Retrieved 13 March 2014. 
  6. ^ Weinberg, Scott. "FEARNET Movie Review: 'Home'". Fearnet. Retrieved 13 March 2014. 
  7. ^ Donato, Matt. "Home Review". WGTC. Retrieved 13 March 2014. 
  8. ^ "At the Devil's Door (2014) Review". Best Horror Movies. 
  9. ^ "At the Devil's Door Review". EFilmCritic. 
  10. ^ "At the Devil's Door". Sound on Sight. 

External links[edit]