I think it’s pretty obvious by now that I am a huge horror fanatic. If it’s billed as scary I would like to see it.
So imagine my surprise when I looked up what was coming out in January and saw Devil’s Due. I had never even heard of it. A week before its release, I had no idea what it was.
And you know what? I wish I had never found out.
Devil’s Due is yet another ‘found footage’ film in an era where they’re quickly becoming tiresome. Yes there are still a few gems coming out, such as V/H/S/ and Chronicle (by gems I mean as compared to the others in the genre). But dude, the well is getting very dry.
Set in 2012/2013, Devil’s Due follows Samantha and Zach McCall (Allison Miller and Zach Gilford, respectively) as they get married, enjoy their honeymoon and deal with an unplanned pregnancy. The film excuses the handheld camera by having Zach explain from the very beginning that he wants to document their life together so they’ll never forget a single moment.
After an interminable prelude and wedding scene in which they do nothing but show you just how in love these two are, they finally encounter something strange. On the last day of their honeymoon they get lost and finally find a cab. The driver talks them into going to a party rather than their hotel room, and at some point they both pass out.
Fortunately the camera was still on and poking out of Samantha’s purse, so we get to see blurry, grainy footage of some strange cult ritual.
Seven weeks later, Samantha’s pregnant! Even though she was on the pill! Dun-dun-duuuun!
What follows are standard scares and a very simple story as the child growing in Samantha’s belly causes stranger and stranger things to happen, both to Samantha and those around here. From a priest having a sudden stroke to some ridiculous telekinetic effects, the entire film is one large trope.
Borrowing so heavily from excellent films like Rosemary’s Baby and The Omen that it feels more like theft than homage, the movie has barely an original bone in its body.
Fortunately the acting is a lot better than most found footage films, and they knew enough to save the special effects for one or two moneymakers. There was some legitimate tension scattered in, but they were always ruined by the ‘scare’ at the end of damn near every scene.
I’m quite disappointed that this was my first horror film of 2014, but I guess there’s nowhere to go but up.