One had high hopes for “Here Comes the Devil,” a low-budget Mexican horror film that came with a terrific trailer featuring recommendations from usually reliable sources such as Fangoria and fearnet.com. But mostly it was that trailer, a breathless red band version that promised unmitigated, hard-R scares reminiscent of ’70s-vintage Tobe Hooper or Wes Craven.
While “Here Comes the Devil” flirts with the kind of taboo-breaking that can kick the legs out from under a viewer — sex hasn’t been this unappealing since “The Tin Drum” — it never quite gets over the hump; which would be all well and good if the movie were in any way, shape or form scary. It just isn’t. Ever.
This, of course, is a fatal flaw for a horror film, many of which have survived the vagaries of time by simply having one or two good, solid scare scenes. Spanish writer-director Adrian Garcia Bogliano can frame a composition but can neither choreograph a scare nor coax the actors to credibly repeat his dialog.
He has succeeded in making a facsimile of a grindhouse horror picture, but comparisons to the consistently overrated but at least legitimately bats Mario Bava are exaggerated. Maybe Lucio Fulci on Xanax. I must admit, however, to not seeing anything else Bogliano has done, and “Here Comes the Devil” has not convinced me to go looking.
Those excited by the trailer can watch “Here Comes the Devil” on Netflix, where it just been added for streaming. Those who do will likely agree: It makes one hell of a trailer.