Director: Paul Catalanotto.
Starring: Lisa Mackel Smith, Sam Cobean, Michael Bienvenu, USA. 1h 15m.
After a string of murders, a young man named Jesse returns home to finish off his parents, the dramatic scenes of him butchering his father lead to his infamous serial killer profile name of the Butcher, the sketchy found footage shows him doing the unthinkable but promising not to hurt his mother while he moves around like a puppet and commences the killing. After a short trial and while proclaiming his innocence, he’s executed by lethal injection. Years later his mother invites a film crew to document her raising the devil in order to prove that demonic possession exists that this is what happened to her son. It might seem of a strange way to prove his innocence but it makes for a brilliant documentary and the crew can’t turn down such an amazing opportunity.
Based on the true events of serial killer Jesse Winters.
Despite having a pretty appealing story the film is executed so badly, the idea a mother trying to prove her son’s innocence by attempting to become possessed by a demon, is fairly new (let me know if there are any other films that run along such ideas). But after the introduction the project is very mundane and offers nothing else new to the found footage or possession genre. You can literally tick off everything you’d expect to see, so don’t look out for anything new or interesting, the acting is pretty mediocre and the award to to the worst actor goes to Kristen Merritt who is the medical back up and strolls around in her scrubs speaking as is she’s on some heavy medication herself.
The mother, Kate Winters (Lisa Mackel Smith) gets herself checked by the medical team, psychiatrist and miss boring, while the film crew sets up cameras, then she starts performing a “ritual” where she sacrifices some animals and starts painting the walls with blood. This fails, so she starts to weaken herself by self harming, and then strange things start to happen, obviously this is all caught by the cameras and the team (despite filming everything) miss a lot of what’s going on until it’s too late.
It plays out like a high school project, that’s disrespectful as a lot of school projects have some imagination and creativity involved. But this film is just dull. Writer/ Director Paul Catalanotto has a long history of documentaries and this should have worked as it plays out like a fake documentary but it seems he needs to be surprised by the unknown and can’t document but he can’t write or direct new materials.
If you are interested in found footage or possession films then it might be something to watch just to gauge the genre but for me once was enough. It’s so crap it’s on youtube and no one has removed it.
R – The Exorcism of Emily Rose (2005), Paranormal Activity (2007) The Veil (2016)
L – Possession Films