Don't Deliver Us from Evil
During summer break, two bored Catholic schoolgirls vow to become Satanists and play a series of increasingly dangerous and morbid games.During summer break, two bored Catholic schoolgirls vow to become Satanists and play a series of increasingly dangerous and morbid games.During summer break, two bored Catholic schoolgirls vow to become Satanists and play a series of increasingly dangerous and morbid games.
Teenage girls Anne (Jeanne Goupil) and Lore (Catherine Wagener) are neighbours, best friends, and roommates in a strict Catholic boarding school for girls. The two have also committed themselves to sin and taken a vow to serve Satan. After beginning with playful rituals and black masses the two soon turn to more grave sins and unspeakable cruelty The manner how these two girls carry out calculated acts of extreme cruelty is very disturbing. However, none of the other characters in the film are likable. Séria denounces the hypocrisy of the bourgeois society and the Catholic church, the men in the film are either hypocrites or potential rapists who are unable to control themselves once a young girl gets slightly flirtatious with them. Leading actresses Jeanne Goupil and Catherine Wagener are near-brilliant in their roles. Both actresses were adults when the film was made, but they look extremely young. Especially Wagener looks like fourteen, which makes the film as a whole, and the sexual scenes in particular, a lot more disturbing. Satanism always is a welcome Horror topic, and it has seldom been presented in a manner as disturbing as it is the case here. This may due to the fact that this film does not rely on typical clichés and that cruel deeds are presented with shocking sobriety, or because it's young girls who commit devilish acts here. The atmosphere is somewhat eerie and yet seems disturbingly real, the beautiful French settings and the film's haunting score increase this impression. Overall, this film is not as graphic as one might expect from what once apparently was the only film ever banned in France. This film delivers a lot more than cheap shock or graphic sleaze, it is genuinely shocking and a great viewing experience as such. Not for the faint-hearted, but a definite must for lovers of European Exploitation/Underground cinema, "Don't Deliver Us From Evil" is a viewing-experience one will certainly not forget. 8.5/10
- Sep 9, 2009