Deliver Us From Evil
Deliver Us from Evil is an American crime-horror film directed by Scott Derrickson and produced by Jerry Bruckheimer. Despite being officially based on a 2001 non-fiction book entitled Beware the Night by Ralph Sarchie and Lisa Collier Cool and a marketing campaign highlighting that it was “inspired by actual accounts”, the film actually does not showcase any of the cases recounted in the book and instead features a completely original plot imagined by Derrickson and co-writer Paul Harris Boardman.
New York police officer Ralph Sarchie (Eric Bana), struggling with his own personal issues, begins investigating a series of disturbing and inexplicable crimes. He joins forces with an unconventional priest (Edgar Ramirez), schooled in the rituals of exorcism, to combat the frightening and demonic possessions that are terrorizing their city. Based upon the book, which details Sarchie’s bone-chilling real-life cases.
Deliver Us from Evil is an American supernatural horror film directed by Scott Derrickson and produced by Jerry Bruckheimer. The film is officially based on a 2001 non-fiction book entitled Beware the Night by Ralph Sarchie and Lisa Collier Cool, and its marketing campaign highlighted that it was “inspired by actual accounts”. The film stars Eric Bana, Édgar Ramírez, Sean Harris, Olivia Munn, and Joel McHale in the main roles and was released on July 2, 2014.
About the Story
The movie opens in Iraq in 2010. A small group of soldiers are running through a war zone in the desert when they encounter a man-made underground cave. The group leader, Lt. Griggs, sends two soldiers (Jimmy Tratner and Mike Santino) to investigate. Jimmy is recording. Underground, the camera light starts to flicker and then eventually dies out completely. Jimmy and Santino are heard screaming, and then the night vision comes on to reveal hundreds of bats exiting the cave around the two men. Santino produces a light and walks over a river of human skulls to the back of the cave, despite Jimmy’s pleas to leave. He illuminates the back wall of the cave, which has a Latin inscription on it.
The movie then flashes forward to 2013, in New York. Detective Ralph Sarchie is seen trying to give mouth to mouth to a very small bundle, which is revealed to be a dead baby. The coroner asks him repeatedly to let go, but he has trouble doing so and is clearly affected by the experience. The next scene shows Sarchie and his partner, Butler, patrolling the streets of New York. They hear a call coming in about a domestic dispute case and Sarchie says they’ll take it. Butler, an adrenaline junkie, is excited because apparently Sarchie has a “radar” that causes him to take cases that take unusual, often violent turns.
The call is about Jimmy Tratner. They pull up to his house and Jimmy answers the door. Sarchie needs to see his wife so Jimmy lets them inside. The wife, sitting on the sofa, lifts her head to show she has been badly beaten. Sarchie and Butler immediately try to arrest Jimmy, who fights back with a knife, slashing Sarchie’s arm, and then sprints away. They eventually catch him, with Sarchie beating him so badly that Butler has to pull him away, and arrest him. Sarchie notices Jimmy’s fingernails are bleeding.
After Sarchie gets stitches in his arm, the two get a call for the local zoo. Upon arriving, the police at the scene tell them a woman has thrown her 2-year-old boy into the lion’s pit. Luckily, the pit is being repainted, so the lions are not there, but the boy was badly injured. In the ensuing chaos, the woman escaped and the power went out. Sarchie and Butler split up and look for the woman. Sarchie notices the animals are going crazy and eventually finds the woman trying to dig into the ground with her bare fingernails. She is also constantly repeating the lyrics to a song by The Doors. While arresting her, they notice a man in a hood, presumably the painter, in the lion enclosure. Sarchie wants to talk to him but he just slowly walks away, farther into the lion’s pit. Sarchie follows him when suddenly the two lions are out in the enclosure. He barely escapes.
Upon taking the woman, named Jane, to the station, they are met by a priest named Mendoza. He wants to know more about Jane’s behaviour, saying he’s been close with her for years and that she isn’t insane. He says there are two types of evil: secondary evil, which man does, and primary evil, which is something else entirely. He believes Jane is possessed. Sarchie doesn’t believe the priest but takes his card anyway.
Deliver Us From Evil
Directed by: Scott Derrickson
Starring: Eric Bana, Édgar Ramírez, Olivia Munn, Sean Harris, Olivia Horton, Antoinette LaVecchia, Valentina Rendón
Screenplay by: Paul Harris Boardman, Scott Derrickson
Production Design by: Bob Shaw
Cinematography: Scott Kevan
Film Editing by: Jason Hellmann
Costume Design by: Christopher Peterson
Set Decoration by: Ellen Christiansen
Music by: Christopher Young
MPAA Rating: R for bloody violence, grisly images, terror throughout, and language.
Studio: Sony ScreenGems, Sony Pictures Classics
Release Date: July 2, 2014