Deliver Us from Evil
Film: Deliver Us from Evil
Director: Scott Derrickson
Writer: Scott Derrickson and Paul Harris Boardman
Starring: Eric Bana, Édgar Ramírez and Olivia Munn
This film begins in Iraq in 2010. There are a group of soldiers that are being fired on. They secure an area and find some stairs that are going down underneath ground. They follow them and their lights stop off. They start yelling and something happens to them.
The film then shifts to New York in 2013. We learn that a baby is found at the bottom of a dumpster. A cop that is trying to bring her back to life is played by Eric Bana. He is really upset about this.
Bana is partnered with Joel McHale. They banter back and forth, with Bana being serious and McHale being more jovial. They hear a call over the radio about a domestic disturbance. They take the call. They find a couple, the husband played by Chris Coy and the wife by Jenna Gavigan. He has been beating her and she called the police. At first, everything is fine, but he is unstable. As his wife tells the story of what happened, Coy gets agitated. They end up trying to take Coy into custody. He cuts Bana and escapes. They give chase and finally get him under control.
The two cops then get a take a call at a zoo. The reason they are called in is that a woman threw her baby into the moat for the lion’s den. The power in the park went out immediately after and everyone who was inside has fled. That is why they have called in the special operations. Bana and McHale then begin their search. The animals are acting weird and they find the woman by where there are monkeys. She is played by Olivia Horton. She is digging in the dirt and scratching on a rock. She is taken into custody as well.
Before they leave the zoo, they see a man inside the lion’s den. He is painting. The man is played by Sean Harris. Bana calls to him, telling him that he wants to speak with him. Harris walks away. Bana follows, but he is chased out of the den by a couple of lions.
Bana goes home to his wife, played by Olivia Munn, and his daughter played by Lulu Wilson. Wilson’s birthday is coming up and we learn that Bana is not home all that often. Munn also drops that she is pregnant as well.
We also meet an unconventional priest, played by Édgar Ramírez.
At work, there is a complaint that a family is hearing things in their house. There is a set of cops who are taking it, played by Dorian Missick and Mike Houston. Bana decides that he will take it with McHale.
They go see the family and he learns that they are sleeping in the living room. The father is played by Daniel Sauli, his wife is Antoinette LaVecchia and their son is Aidan Gemme. Gemme translate for his mother and tells them that they have been hearing scratching and weird sounds from the basement. The cops go down there to check. They end up finding a body, that of Scott Johnsen. They investigate into him to find more. They discover that in the basement was painting that was done by Johnsen and his associate, who is played by Harris. It isn’t finished though.
They try to learn more from Horton, but she has completely lost her mind. We then learn that Ramírez has been working with her. He knows there is something more going on here.
They go to Johnsen’s house and find that it is in shambles. There is odd writing on the wall, much like at the zoo. They find bugs and do not find anyone. They end up finding a picture that puts Johnsen, Harris and Coy. They served together in Iraq. Bana goes back to meet with Gavigan to try to learn more about Harris.
He ends up watching footage that her husband had and sees what happens to them in Iraq. He starts to chip away the painting that was done in there and found the same markings that were at the zoo.
This case and ones similar to it are tearing Bana and his life apart. Bana has a secret he is carrying with him. Can he overcome this and find Harris before it is too late? The forces are then coming after Wilson as well; can Bana stop it before it takes her? Is Harris possessed or is it something else? Bana enlists the aid of Ramírez to put an end to all of this.
I did like this film I thought it was an interesting take on the exorcist/demon possession film. I liked that Bana doesn’t believe it at first and that him coming around takes time. I thought that Ramírez was pretty good and McHale wasn’t bad either. Harris was very creepy as the bad guy in this one as well. I think the story was okay for the most part, but some of what happens was a little farfetched. The ending scene is really good though and I like that we kind of informed of what is going on so we weren’t completely lost.
One issue I had is that this film claims to be based on true story, but really this is based of a book where the real Ralph Sarchie and Mendoza did experience things like this. This film is actually fictional and was an original story that was written for the film. I like that this film does have some truth in it. I also was kind of confused as to who-was-who for a good portion of this film, so I think they could have done a better job of the minor characters being differentiated.
With that said, I would recommend seeing this film if you are into demon possession/exorcism films. This is one is interesting take on it. You have police who are usually handling situations that are legal and criminal, but what do you do when it becomes supernatural. The acting is good, the story is decent and there are some scary scenes. I would not say the best, but it is different and worth a viewing.
My Rating: 7 out of 10