Shame the Devil (2013) | This horror crime thriller just doesn’t cut it as Britain’s answer to Saw

Shame the Devil poster

Death stalks New Scotland Yard detective James (Simon Phillips) when he goes rogue to catch a serial killer whose ‘truth or die’ methods take him from London to New York to solve the case. Horror thriller Shame the Devil from director Paul Tanter (White Collar Hooligan) aspires to be a British answer to the Saw films, but its neither clever or gory enough to be regarded as such, coming off more like an episode of a typical police procedural drama like CSI.

Shame the Devil (2013)

Having an unseen serial killer play judge, jury and executioner by giving each victim the chance to ‘tell the truth’ and ‘shame the devil’ to avoid a gruesome death (which they don’t of course) has great potential, but Tanter fails to deliver. His death scenes (shotgun to the face, pacemaker going into overdrive, an electrified collar) aren’t that inventive and lack credibility. In fact, the whole scenario is poorly written, especially the subplot involving the detective’s expectant wife Kellie (Lucy Clements) that seems to fizzle out once James reconnects with his old flame Sarah (Juliette Bennett) in New York.

Shame the Devil (2013)

The big reveal isn’t much of a surprise either, as it’s hinted at in flashbacks and the final scene is a real head-spinning downer. In trying to fuse the crime and horror genres, Tanter is out of his element here. I just wonder how he’ll fare when tries his hand at sci-fi in The Last Scout, due out next year. Watch out for Hellraiser‘s Doug Bradley in a cameo.

Shame the Devil screens on Sky Premiere (Sky 301/314, Virgin 401/431) from Friday 21 November (11.45pm) and is also available on iTunes

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About Peter Fuller

Peter Fuller is an award-winning print, radio and television journalist and producer, with over 30 years experience covering film and television, with a special interest in world cinema and popular culture. He is a leading expert on the life and career of Vincent Price and actively promotes the actor's legacy through publications, websites and special events.

Posted on November 21, 2014, in British Film, Horror, Maybe Miss, Maybe-Miss and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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