Friday, September 10, 2010

Don't Deliver Us From Evil (1971)

Directed by Joël Séria
Starring Jeanne Goupil and Catherine Wagener

"Help us to be ever more wicked. Help us to do evil. And at the hour of our death, take us to your Satanic bosom."

Banned in France for blasphemy upon it's initial release, Joël Séria's Don't Deliver Us From Evil is a taboo riding romp that will probably leave you feeling a little bit uncomfortable at times, and perhaps a little bored or disappointed at others.

Don't Deliver Us From Evil takes place during the summer break of two 14 year old convent girls (Anne and Lore, played by Jeanne Goupil and Catherine Wagener respectively) as they follow a path of rebellion that ends in a tragic and unexpected fashion.

The two newly befriended girls spend much of their time off from school reading naughty poetry under the covers, riding their bikes around town, and deceptively seducing older men with their budding feminine wiles. One such seduction ends in a Benny Hill style attempted rape chase scene and another ends much worse (for the girls or the seductee, I won't reveal).

As the summer progresses, the girl's boldness grows and their acts escalate from innocent teasing and irreverent misbehavin' to those of violence - both intentional and unintentional.

Overall, Don't Deliver Us From Evil is a mixed bag. When it's good, it's very good, and when it's not so good, all you can do is sit there and imagine how it could have been done better. The moods are all over the place from coming-of-age drama to corny sex comedy and this doesn't fare as well as if it were presented in a serious tone throughout.

Mondo Macabro does a decent job in presenting Don't Deliver Us From Evil. The print is fine, sound is alright and the bonus features are interesting. My nitpicks come mainly with the packaging: the cover is pretty poorly drawn, aren't the characters in the film, and makes the entire presentation look cheap.

One final issue I have is with how the film is marketed. Despite what you would think from title and content details, this is not a horror movie. Yes, the girls have a Satanic ritual in which they swear their allegiance to the dark lord, but in the end, the girls are nothing more than bored, curious teenagers in way over their head.

Even with my gripes, I still have to recommend Don't Deliver Us From Evil. The relationship between the girls is interesting, there are plenty of naughty thrills and quite the unexpected (and oddly humorous) ending. Pick it up if you're into teensploitation, girls-gone-bad-gone-evil stories or just have nothing better to do and want to see very young looking women frolic in their underthings a lot.

- Jeremy Vaca

1 comment:

  1. Good review. I saw this a few years ago and just remember being really bored by the whole thing.


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