dir. Emily Hagins
It has been said that fear and humour are related, two ends of the same strand that coexist like distant relatives. Still, every so often the lines blur and elements from each flavour the other – complimenting without diluting either genre. Sorry About the Demon manages this, coalescing both in near harmony for the majority of its relatively hefty runtime.
Director Hagins’ latest follows slacker Will (Jon Michael Simpson), an aimless toothpaste salesman/baker/candle maker who unwittingly moves into the residence of an evil demon longing for human sacrifice. Will longs to recapture the heart of his ex-girlfriend and vows to change his lethargic ways, if only he had the motivation, energy or talent to do so. Unlike so many white male movie schlupps, Will is genuinely likeable and whilst he frustrates there is a plucky charm to his character that Simpson exercises to great effect.
As with many genre filmmakers, writer/director Hagins has a long relationship with horror having completed her first film at the age of 12. This, her sixth feature (following Netflix’s Coin Heist) seems to be channeling Evil Dead-era Sam Raimi both in its effective use of practical effects and her ability to heroize a reluctant man-child, not to mention gleefully drowning her cast in gloop. Sorry About the Demon also manages to sustain that frenetic energy throughout, even though there are times when some judicious editing would have assisted the more ponderous sequences.
As such Hagins continues to establish herself as one of the most vibrant and interesting horror filmmakers currently working. With dialogue as sharp as Lucifer’s tongue and an assured hand at the helm, Sorry About the Demon is a worthy addition to an already impressive portfolio.
© Alex Kronenburg