• James Harvey

Film Review - The Diabolical - 2015

The Diabolical - 2015

Format: Amazon Video Language: English Released: 2015

Director: Alistair Legrand

Starring: Ali Larter, Max Rose, Chloe Perrin

Another debut film pulled out of the hat, this one by filmmaker Alistair Legrand. A film with an intro that sets the pace for what is to follow even before the opening titles start rolling, this is a slightly predictable tale but enjoyable never the less.

‘Something’ is tormenting single mother Madison (Ali Larter) and her two children, Jacob (Max Rose) and Haley (Chloe Perrin). The ‘something’ as the film goes on, gets more intense and violent as well as changing from a skinless freak of a creature to a more human looking being, why I can’t tell you without ruining it.

Now the plot is good with some nice twists (some less predictable than others), it’s a well-made and put together film barring the odd decision from Legrand to have overly loud music over pretty well the entirety of the film, making it hard at times to hear the conversion (if like me you are hard of hearing you may need the subtitles). The acting from the entire cast is believable, and in parts outstanding, which all adds up to a great little gem of a film that at least tries something new in the terms of its story.

What I really want to talk about however is the family. Not only are they all fantastically portrayed by Ali Larter, Max Rose and Chloe Perrin but all approach the ‘entity’, at least at the start, in their own unique way. The Mother, Madison, fears it, yet is driven by her motherly instinct to protect her children so confronts it as one would expect a caring parent to do. As well, she tries to understand and unravel the mystery of what it is, which, in turn helps progress the story.

Max Rose is a troubled young boy who is the only male member of the family living in the home. He, as one might expect, focuses his anger on the entity while trying to help his Mother by protecting his Sister both at home and school. This inadvertently makes things worse, adding to his Mothers woes which in turn trouble him even more, resulting in a believable emotional turmoil that any family may find themselves in.

Haley approaches the creature as one might also expect from a young & innocent mind; with curiosity and friendship at the start as she tries to befriend it while not fully understanding the danger she is in. It is these differences of approach, as well as the interplay from the three main characters that make this film worth watching. You really do get to care about the family members and what happens to them over the course of the film. Even when the somewhat predictable ending plays out, the goodwill that Legrand has built up with the character development, keeps the good feeling that I at least have for them, firmly with the film.

Overall a good little horror film, the only real, albeit, slight flaw, was the constant loud music. It is well worth watching and makes me curious enough to want to check out any future films by Alistair Legrand.

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