The Devil Within
Written by Matt Dean
Directed by Tom Hardy
In the eyes of moviemakers, every high school student is either an unlikable receptacle for football player semen or an even more unlikable jackass who has made the lifestyle choice of being a complete and total tittering jackass. Outside of Sunnydale, there seems to be nary a favorable student in existence, which is one of the reasons that I grew tired of these High School Horrors long before my senior year.
Regardless, I sat down to view this film with fingers crossed, not really sure what I was getting into. While the murder of a prostitute engaged in a little roleplay with her latest John suggested that this was going to be a serial killer flick, it quite quickly became obvious that this was more in step with the slasher genre.
An 18 year old little miss perfect who is the desire of the whole school (including the principal!) is throwing a big birthday bash and everyone is invited. Well, all the "cool" kids, anyway. And amidst all the dancing, drinking, drugging, and pre-marital diddling, someone is lurking in the shadows...someone dangerous.
If you can imagine Friday the 13th by way of Can't Hardly Wait, you're pretty close to the truth here. As far as low-budget slashers go, this one isn't too bad. The acting was decent and the score was pretty good, but the script could have used some punching up and there was plenty of filler that could have been pared down. Also, there was a great speech delivered by a teacher regarding the 7 deadly sins versus the 7 virtues that lead you to believe that was going to be an important theme here, but it really wasn't played up nearly enough.
The twist at the end was enjoyable, even if not all together surprising, and the series of flashbacks upon the reveal to showcase the clues you may have missed owes more than a little debt to the Saw franchise.