The Devil All the Time

The Devil All the Time ★★★

Some movies really make you feel it that they are based on books. The Devil All the Time is such a movie, taking its good time unraveling how its disparate stories connect to one another, interspersed with lines from the novel, and coming off as a dank horror show of murderous dead ends. I found the first two acts of this piece of Southern Gothic rather tedious, all told, even if the concept is interesting. Though this isn't hammered home, as I see it, two soldiers come back from WWII with an infection of evil (though not overtly supernatural). It infects the stretch of road between their two towns and mayhem ensues until one gets off the track. But this gets a little lost early on, where PTSD is manifested in religious imagery that reminds one particular veteran of his experiences. Christian zealotry is definitely in the crosshairs here, the preachers in particular up to no good (including Robert Pattinson and his amazing accent), but there's a serial killer who is manufacturing his own spiritual experiences. There's also a strict crime subplot, which loses focus. The third act, in which Tom Holland gets righteous on everyone's asses, almost saves the film - I've been going back and forth on this - but in the end, I was more bored than interested, so I have to dock it half a star.

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