Surprisingly Redemptive, But Violent and Scary
Release Date: September 17, 2010
Starring: Chris Messina, Logan
O’Hara, Bojana Novakovic,
Bokeem Woodbine, Geoffrey
Arend, Joshua Peace, Matt
Craven, Jacob Vargas
Audience: Older teenagers and adults
Runtime: 82 minutes
Distributor: Universal Pictures/General
Director: John Erick Dowdle
Executive Producer: Drew Dowdle, John Erick
Dowdle, Trish Hofmann
Producer: Sam Mercer and M. Night
Writer: Brian Nelson
Address Comments To:Jeffrey R. Immelt, Chairman/CEO, General Electric
Jeff Zucker, President/CEO, NBC Universal
Ron Meyer, President/COO, Universal Studios
Adam Fogelson, Chairman, Universal Pictures
100 Universal City Plaza
Universal City, CA 91608-1085
Phone: (818) 777-1000
Web Page: www.universalstudios.com
Five years ago, police detective Bowden lost his wife and infant son in a tragic hit and run car accident. The perpetrator was never found. All the criminal did was leave behind a note saying, “I am so sorry.” Since then, Detective Bowden spiraled into a life of grief and alcoholism. After five years he is finally sober, but he still carries around his anger and unforgiveness.
Meanwhile, across town, a suicide victim jumps from a tall office building. Now, five strangers – an old woman, a young woman, a security guard, a smarmy salesman, and a mysterious mechanic – are trapped in the elevator of the high-rise office building. The on-site security team is able to communicate with the five trapped strangers by using the elevator cameras and a one-way intercom system.
However, this is no ordinary elevator stoppage. Something dark and evil is terrorizing the trapped individuals. As claustrophobia sets in, the five strangers grow increasingly tense with one another, and one Catholic security guard suspects that the Devil may be lurking on the elevator.
Detective Bowden is sent to the high-rise to investigate the suicide, but he is quickly swept up in the elevator crisis. However, this is no routine elevator stoppage. The plot of the trapped passengers thickens when the lights go out in the elevator and, once they turn on again, one passenger is found dead. Detective Bowden and the rescue team race against time as, one by one, the trapped passengers are killed by a mysterious evil. The movie climaxes as the last, remaining passenger comes face to face with the Devil in a twist that collides the present elevator crisis with Det. Bowden’s tragic loss of his family.
DEVIL is, surprisingly, a very good thriller. The story, conceived by M. Night Shyamalan, is intriguing and, at times, truly frightening. The low-budget movie is well directed and suspenseful. The movie does have some content that requires extreme caution, such as a mixed pagan worldview as well as strong language and violent content as the passengers, and some rescue workers, are killed one by one by the Devil.
That said, the movie also contains very redemptive elements including forgiveness, redemption and positive depictions of prayer and Scripture (specifically, a reference to 1 Peter 5:8). The movie also positively emphasizes the existence of God and redemption as more powerful than the evil of the Devil. Still, because of the movie’s scary violence and foul language, MOVIEGUIDE® recommends mature, media-wise viewers take extreme caution.
DEVIL is surprisingly very good. The story is intriguing and sometimes truly scary. The low-budget movie is well directed and suspenseful. DEVIL does have some content that warrants extreme caution, such as a mixed worldview as well as strong language and violent content as the passengers and some rescue workers are killed one by one by the Devil. That said, the movie also contains strong Christian elements including forgiveness, redemption and positive depictions of prayer and the New Testament.