March 4, 2022 Evil at the Door (Movie Review)
Written and directed by Kipp Tribble (Coffin 2011, Coffin 2 2017), Evil at the Door hit digital and VOD platforms on January 28, 2022 after a weeklong spine-tingling debut on the Terror Films channel. Have you ever wondered about people who actualize their most heinous fantasies? Then, perhaps this flick might strike your interest.
Once the title sequence flickers by, vigilant eyes lock onto to a parked black vehicle. From a distance a lone figure with mask in hand approaches and enters the vehicle. Piercing eyes assess the gravity of the situation and holds back a gasp. “Uh oh! This isn’t looking too good. Something’s up. It is akin to slowing down when driving past a car accident. You know it’s bad form but curiosity has taken over. It takes a Herculean effort just to peel your eyes away from all the visual details of the scene. After exhaling a sigh of relief, you pass by the debris glad in your heart of hearts that it isn’t you.
For the next 82 minutes Tribble gives you a free fall roller coaster ride to hell. As the scenes gain traction one is privy to the whirlwind transformation of a typical evening at home into a Hellraiser styled nightmarish bloodbath.
It follows Daniel (Matt O’Neill: Candy Corn 2019, Await the Dawn 2020) who arrives home and makes a beeline for the bar. He pours himself a stiff one and as he throws his head back realizes that he is not alone. His soft-hearted wife Jessica (Sunny Doench: Coffin 2 2017, Uploaded 2021) sits alongside her black sheep of a sister, Liz. Not surprisingly, Liz (Andrea Sweeney Blanco: Blood of Draco 2019, Vencer el desamor series) is a heated point of contention between husband and wife. Each one is immersed within the confines of their cerebral world completely oblivious to what awaits them.
Unfortunately for them, the trio are targets of a home invasion scoped out by the upper echelon of a secret society whose members are known as The Locusts. Once a year these locusts are set free to follow the pheromone trail to a target location. Once there the group enters and have exactly one hundred and eighty minutes to act out their most deviant desires with the unwilling inhabitants of the house and then swarm out when the time is up.
This particular insect invasion isn’t going as smoothly as planned for since there are couple of variables that were not accounted for in the initial planning. One was Liz who came for an unexpected visit, one of the locusts violated a code of the brotherhood, and the IT guy Isaac (Robert Felsted Jr.: Hanukkah 2019, Pretty Boy 2021) whose feline curiosity got the better of him despite being deterred at the door. For Issac and Liz it was merely a matter of being at the wrong place at the wrong time. The clock has run its course and the locusts swarm out minus one. Are there any survivors? How does it play out?
Chalked full of quality acting, Matt O’Neill does a great portrayal of Daniel, a tie-wringing, vodka-swilling husband who is caught in the crosshairs of a corporate investigation. Additionally, Sunny Doench showcases her acting chops by creating a relatable character as the long- suffering wife who sticks up for her family no matter what. Which leaves us to Andrea Sweeney Blanco who portrays Liz as a person that takes advantage of the benevolence of others. You instinctively dislikes her, but as survival mode kicks in you inevitably changes gears and cheers her on.
The Locusts are a motley lot. They create a unique camaraderie amongst them. The veteran members are unified and deliberate in their actions. They make you wonder if the ticket to membership to The Locusts is diagnosis of psychosis. Adding to this, the music is subtle and not overpowering in scenes. In fact, in a few scenes the music belied the real situation at hand. Sprinkled like confetti are periods of silence that enhanced the suspense of the moment when you wonders what will happen next.
Realistic, Evil at the Door sent chills down your back and gives you pause for reflection. Can a home invasions merely be a well-orchestrated event masterminded by some secret society? You just never know, this is why Cryptic Rock gives Evil at the Door 4 out of 5 stars.