Devil

Release Date: 9/17/2010

Plot Summary: In this M. Night Shyamalan penned tale, five strangers are trapped in an elevator with death knocking at it’s currently out-of-order door.  Our tale begins with the suicide of a person plummeting out of the 38th floor of a high-rise office building and landing on a truck, that then rolls down the street.  Meanwhile five people get on one of  the elevators going up, but it becomes stuck between floors with the ability for the security staff to restart it mysteriously gone.  There is a camera in the elevator so the security staff can see and talk to them, but they cannot talk back.  Tensions rise among those in elevator as claustrophobia and impatience sets in.  At a point when tensions are at their highest the power fails and one of the woman passengers is assaulted in the dark.  When the lights come back on no one knows what has happened, but all blame each other.  The police are called, and the cop investigating the suicide responds since he is the closest.  One of the security guards in the control room sees a strange image flash on the monitor and is convinced this is the work of the devil himself.  He goes on to tell the cop of a story he heard when he was younger of the devil coming to earth in human form to kill and collect the souls of the damned early.  The story seems a little far-fetched, but now each time the power fails, someone is revealed to have been murdered in the darkness.  Now with fears at their max and the guard’s story possibly being true, those still surviving in the elevator need out more than ever, as the devil is among them!

Alex’s Thoughts: I was ready to give up on Shyamalan after the awfulness that was The Village and The Happening, but now he is somewhat redeemed in my eyes with this one.  Maybe it’s better if he just writes, and no longer directs, as that seems to work out well here.  They story works really well and you can’t help but be a little anxious yourself each time the lights flicker out in the elevator, not knowing what is going to happen or which passenger may wind up dead.  In that aspect it serves it purpose really well.  It does have some problems with the ending and the convenient fact that the security knows about this happening and has a little bit of the story to add when it serves to advance the story, but these are minor issues and don’t offset the story and acting of those trapped. 

Tim’s Thoughts:I will catch heat for this, but I really liked this. I feel like it benefits from a shorter running time, and really feels like a Twilight Zone episode. The story is self-contained, and wraps up neatly by the end. Speaking of the end, I don’t think I was a huge fan of the “twist ending”, but it wasn’t enough to spoil it for me, I prefer a little more ambiguity, but that’s just me. So all that aside, I really enjoyed watching this, and think as a stand alone tale it works. I wish there was an hour-long weekly show that could pull off  vignettes like this, but without the camp of Tales from the Crypt.

Final Thoughts: Watch it with no expectations beyond a taut story with a clean ending. We think it’s a bit creepy at times and you should have fun trying to figure out what’s happening. So pop some corn, put on your Sherlock Holmes cap and enjoy!

Alex Rates This Movie 8/10

Tim Rates This Move 8/10

“My mother’s story would always begin the same way, with a suicide paving the way for the Devil’s arrival. And it would always end with the deaths of all those trapped.”

View the IMDB entry for this movie here or add it to your Netflix queue

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