I wasn’t in the mood for a movie when I clicked on The Devil All The Time. Especially one based on the religious folks of the West Virginian 50s. But I was on a bit of a Sebastian Stan craze (don’t ask me why).
If I hadn’t IMDb’ed, I could not tell you organically what the movie was about. But here’s what I got: The Devil All The Time is about a bunch of religious people from a rural town in West Virginia. We follow their individual stories not really knowing why and where it’s going. We just follow and wonder if anything is going to eventuate, but it doesn’t. It’s just a life in a day of sort of thing. I suppose, the only reason it is movie worthy would be because of the violence and trauma these people go through. I’m sure the book is probably more captivating.
I guess this film can be reviewed picking at the individual stories. The first and main one would be Arvin (played as an adult by Tom Holland), whose mother died of cancer and his dad, Willard (played by Bill Skarsgard during throwbacks) killed himself. He’s adopted by his aunt and uncle, and is very overprotective of his step sister, Lenora (played as an adult by Eliza Scanlen), who finds herself charmed by the new preacher, Rev. Preston Teagardin (Robert Pattinson), who gets her pregnant. Then there’s this other random story we follow of Carl (Jason Clarke) and his different women, who has an obsession with taking photos of men they pick up off the street, and torture. One of his girls is Sandy (Riley Keough) who’s brother, Bodecker (Sebastian Stan) is a sheriff trying to be re-elected. These worlds eventually collide when Arvin needs to do a runner and gets picked up by old mate Carl. Spoiler ahead: Arvin kills them both and Bodecker goes after the little boy he helped back in the day when his daddy committed suicide. Then at the end, the two Avengers have a shootout, and Spiderman kills the Winter Soldier.
I just don’t get movies like this and their point. They seem to drag for far too long, and feel so unnecessary. And this Antonio Campos directed film ain’t no different. The only impressive thing is how two British dudes are capable of putting on a great southern accent. The final half hour is probably the most exciting. You know, the whole Avengers reunion.
When I do watch films with low impact, that seem to be monotone, I do wonder if it is just up to the level of intellect to interpret it the way it was intended. I mean, I did say I wasn’t in the mood for a film when I put this on…
Unless Netflix deletes every film, and The Devil All The Time is the only one left, give it a miss.