“And remember…you should never let the truth get in the way of a good story.”
Story: The local blacksmith is known as a dangerous kook in the nearby village, and with good reason. But when a little girl enters his home, she finds he’s got a little boy locked up in a gibbet cage. She goes to unlock him…and that’s probably a really bad idea.
Scares: A few chills when the dark side really gets going.
Splat factor: Not much. There are deaths, but most visuals are only after-effects.
Closing scene “shocker”?: No, but the ending is a lot of fun.
Remake, Sequel or OG (Original Ghoul)?: Based on Basque folklore.
Trick or Treat?: The initial story of a devil locked up is probably what the Twilight Zone episode “The Howling Man” is based on. But Devil is a fascinating tale beyond that basic idea. Here, townsfolk are scared of the blacksmith, a government official hints at missing gold that might just be in the blacksmith’s house, as well as the blacksmith’s own back story. It’s a devilishly (heh) good combination of plot and subplots, all wrapping up in a hell (ditto) of a finish.
Then there’s the FX. Outstanding creature makeup, and bizarre Hieronymus Bosch demons when things go to hell. Yeah, the English dubbing on Netflix is obvious, but I’m okay with it. I want to find a subbed copy so I can really sink into the performances, but even with the dub I was transfixed. The performances, especially by Uma Bracaglia and Kandido Uranga as the little Usue and the big bad blacksmith.
While this movie is a great one to queue up on a night where a good story is what’s needed, I’d love to hear this tale at a campfire. It’s the kind that’ll pull you in, and not let go til the very end. Enjoy.
Score: 4.5 out of 5 pumpkins.