Sommerleigh Pollonais, Horror Head Writer
This October I decided to watch and review some of those great horror movies (31 to be exact) that I missed on their initial release. And for the penultimate entry of my series of the 31 OF THE BEST HORROR MOVIES YOU (MAY HAVE) MISSED we will be checking out gory horror May the Devil Take You. Let’s get to it:
Day 30: May the Devil Take You (2018)
Director: Timo Tjahjanto
Starring: Chelsea Islan, Pevita Pearce, Ray Sahetapy
IMDb Trivia: The director, Timo Tjahjanto, is a big fan of the original The Evil Dead. This is a kind of a love letter from him to the movie and the “Cabin in the Woods” genre in general. You can spot several homages throughout the movie.
Plot: When her estranged father falls into a mysterious coma, a young woman seeks answers at his old villa, where she and her stepsister uncover dark truths.
Review: An Indonesian love letter to Sam Raimi might be the easiest way to describe this story of possession and family curses.
If you’ve seen Netflix’s The Night Comes for Us or horror anthology V/H/S 2 then you’ve seen the work of director Timo Tjahjanto, a man who seems to have a penchant for gonzo-styled shot horror loaded with buckets of blood and gore. He continues this trend in May the Devil Take You, an estranged family is forced to come together when their father falls into a coma. They gather at his remote house where daughter Alfie (Cheslea Islan) discovers his father made an unholy bargain for wealth, and now the bill has come due!
Normally I would start by listing the positives first, but this time let’s get the fly out of the punchbowl now. May the Devil takes it sweet time getting started and is basically their version of The Evil Dead. It would be easy enough to dismiss this as a lazy ripoff but there’s just enough here for me to see it’s all about inspiration and not imitation.
Yes the first act is slow but it’s also time invested into the character development. Alfie has a complicated relationship with her dad and her new step-siblings. Her step-mom isn’t exactly the warm type but the kids are more layered which makes it harder to stomach what comes later. Once the horror hits it hits hard and fast and fans of Raimi’s work and splatter-fest horror in general will find loads to entertain them here. It gets nasty folks.
I would never mistake this for an original concept but as they say, imitation is the sincerest form of flattery and May the Devil Take You is perfect for when you’re in the mood to watch some demon possessed witch show a family why a deal with the devil is never a good idea. And if you end up enjoying it you’re in luck as Part 2 came out in 2020. Who said Demonic Double Feature!
Sommer’s Score: 6 out of 10
You can check out Part 29 of my 31 Days List and cerebral horror Come True below together with a retrospective on the Evil Dead franchise at 40.
Sommerleigh of the House Pollonais. First of Her Name. Sushi Lover, Queen of Horror Movies, Comic Books and Binge Watching Netflix. Mother of two beautiful black cats named Vader and Kylo. I think eating Popcorn at the movies should be mandatory, PS4 makes the best games ever, and I’ll be talking about movies until the zombie apocalypse comes.
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