Toss the word demon into a movie title and you’ve pretty much grabbed me by the pussy. But my delicate flower will snap shut on your hand like a Venus Fly Trap if you don’t deliver on what you teased. So let’s see if Demon Tongue and The Neon Demon succumbed to my death clamp.
THE NEON DEMON (2016)
The Neon Demon is the Black Swan of modeling faux horror. It literally took me 9 days to get through this over-hyped piece of…art. Yeah, that’s it. Art. I chipped away at it each night, and it seemed every time I picked up where I’d left off, I was again subjected to a 5-minute artsy mannequin challenge in which actresses playing models pose while staring at neon lit pyramids or something equally as pretentious.
Hey, I appreciate all the Argento lighting and techno beats, but nothing fucking happens in this movie. A new model in town is loathed by all the other bitchy female models because she’s getting work. Jena Malone is hot for her but eventually settles for a corpse instead.
When it appears there might be a monster in the model’s hotel room, it turns out it’s just a wildcat. Keanu Reeves (as if I wasn’t already tortured by him enough in my recent viewing of Knock Knock) comes to her in a dream (I think) and deep throats her with a knife. He’s actually much better in this role, so perhaps he used life experience to find his character’s the motivation.
And finally, in the last 20 minutes, the girls (I think they’re all living in the same house at this point, but I may have missed some actual plot between breaks in this 2-hour mannequin challenge art film) go after her with knives, then have a lesbian session in the shower before the deeper meaning behind the impact of the modeling industry on young woman is revealed…and it involves eating each other out.
If your idea of horror is contemplating the symbolism of everything that splashes across the screen for 2 hours, this film will terrify you.
DEMON TONGUE (2016)
Even though it’s not a great movie, at least there’s a demon or two in Demon Tongue. An opening scene treated with a retro filter has a woman going demonic and demonaxe on her family. The blade and blood definitely got my attention.
Next we meet a group of friends heading into the woods for a paranormal investigation. One of the girls has visions, so when the group ends up in a rundown building, her visions let us know there’s some connection to the film’s opening scene. In classic old school fashion, one guy takes a detour for a sex break.
Oh, almost forgot. There’s a girl with him. She gets cut on something while groping around for her clothes, so I geared up for some Night of the Demons type action.
But Demon Tongue simply never takes off. The murderous mom makes an appearance to the cut girl as the possession takes hold. There’s also an actual demon monster that looks cool in a still shot. Unfortunately, it looks like a still shot even when it’s on motion picture. Yeah, it’s basically just a person standing in front of the camera wearing a mask. But it does look much better near the end when it’s bathed in shadowy neon red light.
The big letdown here is that only the cut girl gets possessed! She has an awesomely sick first kill, but then regroups with the two remaining characters, who spend most of the film talking about their paranormal investigation, trying to find the missing person, and wondering why the possessed girl is acting so weird!
She does finally get a slight case of demon face, and there are a couple more moments of gore, but Demon Tongue mostly just holds its tongue, never really letting loose with an assault of demon fun.