By Eric Polk-
As you can tell from the heading, The Devil Inside, the #1 movie of the week is weak, very weak. Ok not very weak, but it's that old cat that has a teensy bit of fight left in it but nothing else.On October 30, 1989, Maria Rossi committed a triple murder during an exorcism performed on her. The Catholic Church became involved, and she has since been in a Catholic psychiatric hospital in Rome. The film shows a news story and police investigation showing, in graphic detail, the three members of the clergy whom she murdered. Her daughter, Isabella, learned of the murders from her father, who died three days after telling her.
Twenty years later, Isabella is in the process of filming a documentary about exorcisms, and to find out more about her mother, she visits a school in Rome that deals with exorcisms and enters a classroom where students, priests and scientists are having a discussion about whether or not a subject is possessed by a demon or just has a mental condition.
She has dinner with a few students and ends up getting a little closer with two priests, Ben and David. They talk more about the differences between being possessed and mental illnesses, and inform Isabella that they can't explain the differences, it's something you "just know". On that note, Ben and David are operating outside of the Church and performing exorcisms to help patients. They take Isabella with them on an exorcism performed on Rosalita (Bonnie Morgan), in the basement of the family home. They bring along medical equipment to analyze and determine if it's possession or mental illness. Rosalita attacks the crew, after spouting out obscene remarks in different languages and accents. She calls Isabella by name, despite not knowing her. Eventually, they get her under control and stabilized, though her fate is unknown.
When Isabella goes to visit her mother in the asylum, she finds that her mother speaks in different accents, and has paintings all over the walls. One, in particular, matches a picture with her father and mother from when Isabella was six years old. The first words that her mother Maria even speaks are "connect the cuts"; this refers to all of the inverted crosses carved into her arms and her bottom lip. Maria creeps forward and tells her that killing a child is against God's will, then lets out an ear-shattering scream which disrupts the video cameras in the room, before Isabella is forced to leave when doctors rush in. Isabella tells David and Ben that she terminated a pregnancy years ago and her mother had no way of knowing that, which was another sign that showed possible possession. When the crew prepares to perform an exorcism/analysis on Maria, David is very worried about losing his job, since the Church does not authorize exorcisms without undeniable proof that the patient is indeed possessed, nor without the exorcist being ordained by the Catholic Church as an exorcist and without being authorized to exorcise. During the procedure, she mentions something about Ben, and knowing what he did in the past (this occurrence remains unknown; it possibly pertains to Ben's uncle, who got him into the priesthood at the age of eighteen--which is actually an impossibility) as well as Isabella's child. Maria breaks free of her restraints and sends Ben flying into the door, also knocking David onto the ground. The doctors rush in and grab the video camera, cutting the screen to black.
After analyzing the data taken from the video and audio files, they present the evidence to the Church, believing there was enough evidence to have Maria moved back to the United States to have an exorcism performed on her. David shows many signs of stress, worried about losing his job, as Ben plays the audio files over and over again, listening to the part where Maria says "I know what you did". When Ben is asked by Michael about what he was listening to, he switches to a different clip and finds that there were four different demons speaking in unison. As time progresses, Isabella shows concern about David, who is eating in the dark at the kitchen table. David is to perform a baptism at his church, and asks Michael to tag along. As he holds the baby, he mutters some lines from the Bible, before forcefully submerging the baby in the water. He can be seen shoving the baby down into the water before the crowd of people rush up to save the baby, as David passes out.
Well, let's be clear on this. There are a couple of genuinely scary moments in this film, very intense, very real, but sandwiched inside those brief pieces of corned beef is rotting slabs of ancient potted meat. In between the good scenes are nothing more than History Channel documentary stuff that is just drab and uninspired.
Plus, without giving anything away....THE ENDING IS COMPLETE,UNADULTERATED BULLSHIT!!!!! Congrats, movie. You threw Ragu at your worthless prize! It didn't bother me this was yet another 'found footage' movie, what did bother me was just its inconsistency and the bullshit ending. Save your money, Reaplings. Wait for dvd/blu-ray.