Directed by: Sean Byrne
Cast: Ethan Embry, Shiri Appleby, Kiara Glasco, Pruitt Taylor Vince
We’ve already seen a few extremely entertaining genre pics this year, and we’ve got nothing but time to see the stack of sublime cinematic efforts increase. If the first three months of the year are any indicator, we’re going to be talking about 2017 for a long time. As it is, I’ll most certainly be praising The Devil’s Candy until… well, until some of the devil’s candy comes oozing from my tear ducts.
The story, written and directed by Sean Byrne, initially looks like your run of the mill possession story, but that notion goes sailing out of the window rather quickly. The Devil’s Candy is actually a hybrid picture, part possession, part obsession, part serial killer – it’s a thick, rich piece of cinema that stands an excellent chance of gaining a genuine cult following.
Without massacring the narrative I’ll tell you that Jesse, a struggling painter moves his family into a Texas home with a horrifying history. Dark forces have dwelled within this home for too many years to count, but even worse, the home’s prior resident is still lurking in the area, and although he’s escaped that wretched building, he’s still haunted… and violent, and you guessed it, drawn to that abode. What effects will the home have on Jesse, and will the home’s former occupant come looking for trouble?
You can surmise a few accurate details based on that synopsis, but there are a plethora of surprises in store for viewers and there’re a few moments that are not only taboo, they’re deeply, deeply disconcerting. You won’t feel at ease after checking this one out, and you can bank on that.
Ethan Embry fronts the flick, and he once more utilizes his chameleon like talents to birth a character that we feel genuine compassion for. But Embry isn’t alone in this success story. In fact every supporting performer in the film is top notch, but Pruitt Taylor Vince is absolutely bone chilling. Vince delivers an Oscar worthy performance, but given the fact that this is a genre film, and it didn’t earn a major theatrically release, he stands no chance of being recognized on the level that he deserves, which is a damn shame, because he is absolutely spell binding.
Anticipate a perfectly paced film with plenty of disquieting sequences and jarring visuals. The chemistry of the cast is excellent, the dialogue is absolutely beautiful and completely, and thoroughly believable and realistic. While the first two acts are superb, the final act surpasses sublime. It’s going to leave you double-checking every lock in your house, and it’s going to ensure that The Devil’s Candy lingers in your mind for quite some time. It’s March 20th, and as of today I can comfortably say that The Devil’s Candy is hands down the best genre picture I’ve seen this calendar year. If you’re after high caliber horror, this is an absolutely must-see.