Thursday, January 05, 2012

The Devil’s Rock Gets a North American Release: A Review and Preview

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Director: Paul Campion.

Writers: Paul Finch, Brett Ihaka, and Paul Campion (screenplay).

Cast: Craig Hall, Matthew Sunderland and Gina Varela.

When there is a film that is about Nazis dabbling with the occult, ears are going to perk, and the question is would it have turned the tide of World War II? With The Devil’s Rock, all those tender loving thoughts are going to get explored again with its DVD release Feb 14.

Shades of Enemy Mine can be found at one level, and some nods to the Indiana Jones franchise can be found at another. The Nazis did try to look for the Spear of Destiny, Ark of the Covenant and Holy Grail before and during the war. Viewers who are not acquainted with history or archaeology may not know of Hitler’s preoccupation with connecting to the occult.

Just like the video release with its plethora of extras, plenty of documentaries exist which explore what the Nazis were trying to do to win the war. From being ahead technologically to tracking down of holy artefacts, Hitler was trying to be like Constantine. Possession of the right object to lead them into battle will send them to victory. But history will remember him as being more like Caligula.

D-Day takes on a new meaning with this film. It will be a day of destiny for Captain Ben Grogan (Craig Hall). Part of him yearns to be at home with his wife but he is duty-bound. Colonel Klaus Meyer (Matthew Sunderland) discovers that that he needs to undermine what the führer wants. He learns that the devil cannot be controlled. While Grogan finds both figures are quite deceptive, the only thing that matters in the end is who lives and who dies.

The dead end that happens is in trying to understand why Gorgan left the demon, a succubus, behind, trapped on an island for others to find. He walked into the belly of the beast, symbolic of him looking deep into himself, and found that he is no better than his tormentors. The worst fears of being a soldier is in behaving just like the enemy.

Perhaps that is why some demon summoning scenarios is appealing to watch. Just how much of the devil can be blamed for a selfish situation gets put forth. When it cannot get excused, getting a priest to forgive is not as simple when the individual is asking God to look the other way.

The bonus features will include: five behind-the-scenes featurettes, director commentary, extended scenes and outtakes.

Overall: 7 out of 10.

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