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Sunday, 18 January 2015

Mais ne nous délivrez pas du mal

Last night I really needed something to sit down and relax with, as my poor Indy has been very injured these past few days, and I've been extremely worried that he wouldn't pull through. He's alright now, thank goodness, as we took him to the emergency vets and they injected him with anti-inflammitory and painkillers. Though, I'm just saying, this film is certainly not one to watch in a situation like that...

Mais ne nous delivrez pas du mal (Don't Deliver Us from Evil) is a very unnerving, creepy film about two French girls in a Catholic boarding school. Everything about it, from their completely disturbing behaviour, to the constant church music and irresponsible adults provides a very tense atmosphere. I knew from the beginning that it wasn't going to be sweet and fluffy, but I was very surprised at just how creepy it was! Still, I loved it!

Anne and Lore are two best friends who decide they have had enough of their religion and dedicate themselves to Satan in a ritual they planned in the summer holidays. Over the holidays, they pledge themselves to a life of evil, despite looking like innocent angels, and end up sadists and murderers.

Certain bits made me very very uncomfortable, namely where they hurt and killed animals (they fed a man's pet birds poison and giggled as they watched him cry; and later on, Anne squeazes another of his birds until its heart stops!) Even the part where Anne is sitting with her parents in the chateau, being very rough with her pet kitten until it cries out, is very horrible. Also, the bit where they taunt and make fun of the disabled man, killing his birds and then bending him to their will to lead the ritual, is just awful...

Also, where Lore is led by Anne into seducing men until the point that they attempt to rape her, is hard to watch. This leads to Anne murdering a man, so they wrap his body in a carpet and throw him in the lake.
When they get back to school after the holidays, it comes as no shock that the teachers suspect them of the murder, as they had been very antisocial - almost psychopathic - to people beforehand. They are asked questions, leading to Lore breaking down. At this point, it is obvious that they're so obsessed with each other, egging each other on, even loving each other, that they would rather die than be separated...
So in the school play, they hold hands in identical white dresses (similar to the one they wore during the Satanic ceremony) and recite very depressing yet artistic poems. The nuns worry that they have gone mad - and I don't blame them - shortly before they douse themselves with liquid and set their dresses on fire. Creepily, the audience begin to cheer and clap, thinking that it is all pretend, but soon realise that they're burning to death, leading to a mass panic... The camera pans out on the stage curtains burning.

Other parts of the film, however, are very beautiful; Anne and Lore are gorgeous - both their faces and bodies that they show off so frequently - the long white 70s dresses are beautiful and sexy, the religious music is lovely in a way, and my favourite part was the peaceful, rustic scenery of Anne's chateau and the surrounding French countryside. And I just love how abandoned certain places are, creating the space for the evil to take place... All the eye-candy makes it all the harder to bear.

Needless to say, despite this film being dated (1971) it is very hardcore psychologically. Yet I would recommend it to any fan of cult, horror or world-cinema.

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