The Devil Inside (film)
|The Devil Inside|
|Directed by||William Brent Bell|
|Produced by||Matthew Peterman
Lorenzo di Bonaventura
|Written by||William Brent Bell
|Music by||Brett Detar
|Editing by||Timothy Mirkovich
William Brent Bell
|Distributed by||Paramount Pictures|
|Running time||83 minutes|
|Budget||Unknown. US rights acquired for $1 million|
The Devil Inside is a 2012 American supernatural horror film directed by William Brent Bell, and written by Bell and Matthew Peterman. It is a documentary-style film about a woman who becomes involved in a series of exorcisms during her quest to determine what happened to her mother, a woman who murdered three people as a result of being possessed by a demon. Produced by Peterman and Morris Paulson, the film stars Fernanda Andrade, Simon Quarterman, Evan Helmuth, and Suzan Crowley, and was released theatrically on January 6, 2012.
The film topped the US box office on its opening weekend, yet dropped drastically in the second week, before disappearing completely from the box office top ten. This might have been caused by the fact that there was no preview screening for the press, which subsequently panned the movie after its premiere. Additionally, the audience reception was very negative. Despite this, the film was a commercial success, grossing roughly $100 million.
Principal photography began in 2010 in several locations, including Bucharest (Romania), Rome (Italy) and Vatican City. The film is of the "found footage" genre, and so is shot in documentary style despite being fictional. Lorenzo di Bonaventura and Steven Schneider took the movie to Paramount Pictures, who ultimately produced it through their low-budget company Insurge Pictures, who acquired the film as their first release hoping it would replicate the success of Paranormal Activity.
The film was not screened for critics, and was subsequently almost universally panned. It received an F from CinemaScore, which tracks audience reaction. It was the only major-studio film to open the weekend after New Year's Day (typically a blank spot in film-release schedules), and for that weekend it displaced Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol, which had held the top-grossing position for the previous three weekends. In its second weekend, however, the film dropped 76.2%, which was the largest second-weekend drop for a film since Jonas Brothers: The 3D Concert Experience (77.4%) in early 2009.
Based on 80 reviews by Rotten Tomatoes, the film currently holds an approval rating of 6%. "The Devil Inside is a cheap, choppy unscary mess, featuring one of the worst endings in recent memory," said Peter Howell of the Toronto Star who felt that the film was a candidate for the worst film of 2012. Matt Rorie of Screened.com gave the film zero stars, citing the film's lack of atmosphere and ending as the two major negatives. Stephen Witty of The Star-Ledger opined that "after The Blair Witch Project got by with sticks and stones and offscreen noises, filmmakers started thinking they didn't have to show anything. Well, no. It's better when you don't show too much – but if your story is about the supernatural, eventually you're going to have to come up with something. The Devil Inside can’t." Michael Phillips of the Chicago Tribune felt that the film "joins a long, woozy-camera parade of found-footage scare pictures, among them The Blair Witch Project, the Paranormal Activity films and certain wedding videos that won't go away." Michael Rechtshaffen of the Hollywood Reporter stated that the film "proves as scary and unsettling as a slab of devil's food cake – only considerably less satisfying. The Rehash Critics gave this film a 1 out of 5.
The film's ending, in particular, came in for heavy criticism. "Is it the worst movie ending of all time?" David Haglund asked in Slate, citing various negative audience reaction to that aspect of the film online. What upset them even more than its abruptness, he suggested, was the on-screen message immediately following it that urged audiences to visit a website to learn more. "[It's] a marketing twist that makes audiences feel taken advantage of," Haglund observed.
Besides the preponderance of negative reviews, there were a few critics who gave the film a "thumbs up". Steve "Uncle Creepy" Barton of Dread Central had a positive review of the film stating, "The Devil Inside is home to moments that will shock, scare, disturb, and leave you gasping. It's a trip to the dark side that's well worth taking." Joe Leydon of Variety felt that the film "generates a fair amount of suspense during sizable swaths of its familiar but serviceable exorcism-centric scenario."
See also 
- "THE DEVIL INSIDE (15)". British Board of Film Classification. Retrieved 2012-10-10.
- Movie Projector: 'Devil Inside' challenges 'Mission: Impossible' – latimes.com. Latimesblogs.latimes.com (2012-01-05). Retrieved on 2012-02-06.
- The Devil Inside (2012). Box Office Mojo (2012-04-24). Retrieved on 2012-04-24.
- Kit, Borys (February 3, 2011). "Paramount Bets 'The Devil Inside' Is Its Next 'Paranormal Activity'". Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 2011-11-29.
- Haglund, David (January 9, 2012). "Does The Devil Inside Have the Worst Ending in Movie History?". browbeat. Retrieved January 12, 2012.
- "The Devil Inside bei Rottentomatoes.com". Rotten Tomatoes. 2012-03-12. Retrieved 2012-03-12.
- Goldstein, Gregg (April 23, 2011). "Big players eye more low-budget fare". Variety. Retrieved 2011-11-29.
- Weekend Report: 'Contraband' Hijacks MLK Weekend. Boxofficemojo.com. Retrieved on 2012-02-06.
- "The Devil Inside". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved January 06, 2012.
- Howell, Peter (January 05, 2012). "The Devil Inside: The Devil didn't do it.". Toronto.com. Retrieved January 06, 2012.
- Witty, Stephen (January 06, 2012). "'The Devil Inside' review: It came from Hell.". NJ.com. Retrieved January 06, 2012.
- Phillips, Michael (January 06, 2012). "'The Devil Inside': Don't blame the pope for this one – 1 star". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved January 06, 2012.
- Michael Rechtshaffen (January 06, 2012). "The Devil Inside: Film Review". Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved January 06, 2012.
- "The Devil Inside (2012)". CraveOnline. Dreadcentral. Retrieved January 06, 2012.
- Leydon, Joe (January 06, 2012). "Variety reviews The Devil Inside". Variety. Retrieved January 06, 2012.