Deliver Us From Evil
2014, R, 118 min. Directed by Scott Derrickson. Starring Eric Bana, Édgar Ramírez, Olivia Munn, Joel McHale, Chris Coy, Sean Harris, Olivia Horton, Dorian Missick, Mike Houston.
REVIEWED By Steve Davis, Fri., July 11, 2014
”Inspired from actual events” experienced by real-life Bronx cop, Ralph Sarchie (translation: What you see onscreen didn’t happen), the film begins with three American soldiers stumbling upon a cryptic Latin inscription written on the wall of an Iraqi cave. Turns out, this chance encounter opens a portal to hell that remains ajar when the men return home to New York City to commit random acts of Mephistophelean madness. (The music of the Doors is prominently featured to portend and underscore the portal theme. Seriously.) Enter Sarchie (played by Bana, as if impersonating Father Karras) and a chain-smoking, hard-drinking Latin street priest (do they make those anymore?) with Pre-Raphaelite curls to cast out the demons in this piece of grisly hokum that steals heavily from the seminal 1973 exorcism film that started it all. When will the movies’ obsession with this rarely performed religious practice ever wane? God only knows.