July 13, 2017

Shudder Review: Inner Demon (2017)

"Turns out the title of this one is quite literal."

And here goes Shudder again, bringing Horror fans another movie that was in release limbo, and giving it the exposure that it deserves.

Inner Demon is the 2nd part of a planned trilogy by writer/director Ursula Dabrowsky. We haven't seen the first one, the ultra low-budget Family Demons (the final installment, The Devil's Work, is apparently in production now), but if this middle installment is any indication, we definitely need to check it out.

Because the bottom line is that Inner Demon is a solid exercise in effective filmmaking on a budget.
Sam is babysitting her little sister, Maddy, as their Mom works the night shift. Maddy complains that something scary is under her bed, and Sam explains to her that it's The Babadook, and if she doesn't get her little ass back in bed, she's going to let the monster eat her. Then a skeevy couple shows up, throws Sam in their trunk, and drives away.

Sam escapes from the trunk, and runs like hell through the Australian woods to find help, and she happens on a farmhouse that ends up being no help at all, because it turns out to be where the creepy couple lives. She realizes this too late, and is forced to hide in the closet and pray that they don't find her... all while slowly bleeding out from a gash in her side, and wondering what happened to her little sister.

A young girl's best attempt at survival ensues.

Inner Demon is just the kind of lower-budget flick that we like; it's intense and disturbing, boasts a competent cast, and it goes to places that we never expected it to. It didn't feel like we were watching a low-budget movie at all; from the direction, to the look of the film, it was all handled extremely well by writer/director Ursula Dabrowsky. It starts fast, and doesn't ever really slow down to catch its breath at all.

Sarah Jeavons made for a sympathetic heroine here, making us genuinely feel her plight, and doing so (for the most part) from the confines of a closet. Andreas Sobik made for a grimy and terrifyingly imposing killer too.

As for the way the movie ended, well, I'm not actually sure how I feel about it. On one hand, the twist in the third act was completely unexpected and I dig it, but it kinda killed the tension that had built up over the first two acts, and sent the movie into familiar trope territory. ***MILD ENDING SPOILERS*** Everything after Sam leaves the closet and finds her sister felt tacked on, and a bit confused. ***END SPOILERS***

Inner Demon had some bloody moments and cringe-inducing scenes, including that nagging wound of Sam's (and how she deals with it), and a brutal beating.

No nudity to be found here, but Sarah Jeavons looks moity foine in a tank top.

For its first two-thirds, Inner Demon is a taut little thriller that did a good job of maintaining a palpable amount of tension. Where the movie loses it a bit is in its third act, where suddenly it goes in a wildly different direction, and ended with a final shot that make us shake our heads.

It's a good flick overall, I'm just wondering how Horror fans are going to take that twist...


Inner Demon is available now on VOD (streaming for free on Amazon Prime)


Sarah Jeavons is alovely Aussie with a bright future.

1 comment :

  1. Watched this morning, based upon your recommendation. As you predict, loved the first two acts, a bit conflicted about the end.