Film Review: ANOTHER EVIL (2016)

Film Review: ANOTHER EVIL (2016)

Aug 16, 2016

Ghosts, demons, evil spirits, all things that are said to cause harm to humans. And there are ghost hunters and exorcists who claim to be able to protect us from these evil entities. But what happens when the solution is worse than the problem? Carson D. Mell’s ANOTHER EVIL which played this year’s Fantasia Festival looks at that very issue.

Dan (Steve Zissis BAGHEAD, BAD MILO) is a successful artist, so successful that he’s about to purchase a second house up in the mountains. However the first time he takes wife Mary (Jennifer Irwin, THE GATE) and son Jazz (Dax Flame 21 and 22 JUMP STREET) up to it they find it already has residents…it’s haunted by some ghastly looking spirits. The first psychic Dan consults tells him the specters are harmless and should be left alone. That doesn’t sit well with Dan so he consults Os (Mark Proksch BETTER CALL SAUL) an “industrial-grade exorcist” who tells him the house is haunted by EFDs (Evil Fully Determined) spirits. Dan however begins to wonder if the real danger isn’t instead human.

The film starts out as an amiable enough mumblecore type comedy, but it’s just so low key it barely registers at times. The horror elements are barely there except for the brief appearances of the ghosts. It’s only after the much more aggressive Os and his own personal demons enter the picture that the tone starts to darken and by the end the film becomes a full on horror movie. While it does work up some tension at the end it never really manages to deliver the scares. The horror is as understated as the comedy. It functions as much as a profile of a badly troubled man then as a supernatural horror comedy.

This is writer/director Carson D. Mell’s first feature but he has done several shorts and written for television, including HBO’s Silicon Valley. Mell’s resume may be the reason why the film feels like it would have been better suited as a short, or a piece for television. The film isn’t bad, it’s just very slight and never really developed, it’s the kind of film you NetFlix as background noise, not something you go out looking for.