Found footage horror films seem to be all the rage at the moment, with almost every other horror film being a shaky, static-y hand held journey through dark corridors and nightmarish situations and The Devil Inside sticks pretty closely to this pre-established formula.
The story follows Isabella Rossi, young woman who’s mother killed three members of the church during an exorcism in nineteen eighty nine. Fast forward twenty years later and Isabella, along with camera man Michael, embark on a journey to investigate the truth behind what happened with Isabella’s mother and investigate her claims of demonic possession.
Travelling to Rome Isabella and Michael team up with a pair of priests specialising in exorcisms, exorcisms that the Vatican does not approve of. Together the four of them enter the mental institution where Isabella’s mother is being held to perform a sneaky exorcism, opening the door for all of the horrors to begin.
Whilst I initially found the film to be an interesting take on the found footage genre, with its documentary feel and investigation of demonic possession versus mental illness towards the end it quickly began to descend into a by-the-numbers horror affair, running around in the dark, shaking the camera and lots of screaming.
The Devil Inside had the potential to do things different and make an interesting and unique film, but instead chose to stick to a standard formula. Whilst some may consider this playing safe I found that the film did not benefit from this. Coupled with an ending that I am sure most people will find rushed and disappointing the film feels like a missed opportunity, one that will be quickly forgotten.