Thursday, May 16, 2013

The Demonologist: Review

Andrew Pyper is a bestselling author in Canada and has even been compared to Stephen King. His highly acclaimed new novel "The Demonologist" was published here this past March, and reportedly,  Universal immediately bought the film rights and put it into development.

The book is the journey of a college professor who goes on a wild demon chase after a tragic accident. It cleverly interweaves John Milton's Paradise Lost and pits the declared agnostic scholar against demons that are either real or possibly imagined by a grief-stricken mind.

There are some wildly frighting moments (the farm basement scene rattled me), but overall the book is better in concept that execution. I had a problem with the narrative flow, the fits and starts, the overly cinematic action scenes, and a general superficiality that never delves deeper at the best moments in the book. Great horror takes you over the edge and into darkness. This one only hints at it from across the street and moves on. Then there's that whole last part. Journeys like these need to have some sort of catharsis. So I have to use my imagination for the beginning, and most of the middle, AND the end?  Exactly when should the author step in and put some meat on those bones?

The right director with a sinister vision, and screenwriter who can flesh out the missing soul of the book, could make this a truly chilling movie. As it stands, the book is a light read for a summer night.






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