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Category:    Home > Reviews > Horror > Supernatural > Thriller > Demons > The Demon's Rook (2013/Cinedigm DVD)

The Demon's Rook (2013/Cinedigm DVD)

Picture: B- Sound: B- Extras: B- Film: C+

The Demon's Rook is a surprisingly well made independent film that has exceptional cinematography, production design, and direction. Produced by Black Rider Productions and hot off its praise from Ain't It Cool, Bloody Disgusting, and Tribeca Film Festival - the film is pretty campy but not in a completely bad way.

When he was a child Roscoe (James Sizemore and Emmett Eckert) was frequently visited by Dimwos (John Chatham), an elder demon that would visit Roscoe at night. One day, Dimwos lures Roscoe into a portal that takes him to a strange world where Dimwos teaches Roscoe various things, including his ancient language. Dimwos withholds nothing from Roscoe, save one single secret that ends up becoming Roscoe's downfall when he releases three especially deadly and evil demons.

Roscoe manages to flee by crossing back through the portal to the human world but ends up taking the three demons with him. Once back in the human world, Roscoe recollects his previous human existence and the childhood friend he left behind, Eva (Ashleigh Jo Sizemore), who has grown into a beautiful woman. This all causes conflict within Roscoe, as this clashes with what Dimwos had led him to believe. Now Roscoe must track down the three demons and battle them into submission while also trying to deal with the evil they're unleashing on the unsuspecting world.

All in all, the film is an ambitious low budget filmmaking attempt and has cool lighting (very Argento-esque reds, blues, and greens) and makeup EFX on the Demons. The highlight of the film is a crazy party scene where the demons show up and everyone starts killing each other with several neat practical effects shots and carnage. I commend the filmmakers for reaching back to the old ways of filmmaking and straying away from digital effects as much as possible but feel like this one missed the mark a little bit due mainly to the lackluster performances by the cast.

Presented in standard definition with a 1:85.1 widescreen, anamorphically enhanced aspect ratio and a lossy Dolby Digital 5.1 mix - the film looks and sounds okay for the DVD format.

Extras include

Ghost Witch - a short film by James Sizemore

Making of a Demon

Filmmaker Commentary

Deleted Scenes and a Gag Reel

All in all, this ambitious little horror movie isn't bad if you are yearning to see a gorefest wrapped in a decent package. However, it's not quite unique or stylistic enough to achieve cult status.

- James Harland Lockhart V



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