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Home | Film Reviews | Film Review: Belzebuth (2017)

Film Review: Belzebuth (2017)

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In BELZEBUTH, Special Agent Emanuel Ritter leads a police investigation into a series of shocking deaths. But after a priest from the Vatican finds a link between the murders and an ancient demon, a descent into horror ensues.


Directed by: Emilio Portes
Written by: Luis Carlos Fuentes and Emilio Portes

“He has experienced evil in it’s deepest, darkest form.” BELZEBUTH

Tobin Bell (The Firm, Saw) plays Father Vasilio Canetti, an expert in demonology. He is a priest who left the church.  Detective Emmanuel Ritter (Joaquin Cosio) and his wife, Marina Ritter (Aurora Gil) are in the hospital with a baby.  A nurse comes in to relieve another nurse and she looks possessed. There is a horrible tragedy. Something happened, something was in that woman. This type of stuff in horror is a little overwhelming because it’s babies and you never want to see something this horrible. Yet, the world we live in is scarier and we know this is just a movie.


Emmaunel Ritter (Joaquin Cosio) lost his family and maybe some of his soul. Joaquin Cosio portrays this character with so much heart. It is sad to watch what happens in the beginning. His wife Marina (Aurora Gil) is traumatized.

Five years later, we briefly meet Ivan Franco (Tate Ellington). The state of the world, this movie is fascinating. Some people look at things in different ways. There is a shooting at a school now and Emmanuel Ritter is called in to investigate and find out what happened. Why a child would kill his fellow students and himself. It is horrible. Agent Ivan Franco is part of the Paranormal Forensics Division. There will be five more tragedies and they horrible tragedies.

Agent Franco meets Detective Ritter. Franco thinks there is a pattern from what happened five years earlier that involved Detective Ritter losing his son. Vasilio Canetti was a “former Jesuit priest who was excommunicated for performing Satanic rituals in Rome.” (Tate Ellington said that like it was nothing!) Franco got “finger prints” but not fingers. The entire ceiling in the school is covered in them. Demetrio (Jose Sefami) is Ritter’s partner and he wants to go see a “witch.”

Some kind of force came through her home and tried to attack her daughter. Another tragedy happens and Vasilio tases a woman and takes her child while a group of people watch the van speed away. They find a survivor in the explosion but she only makes it long enough to tell them the priest from the Church of the Children was there. Ritter and Franco wind up on a road trip.

Ritter and Franco check out the building Vasilio was living in and well, lots of creepy stuff. Symbols, things moving, weird noises, crucifixes, flies and more. The special effects team for this movie did a great job. It gets creepy. Ritter is offered his wife and child back and Vasilio shows up as Ritter is attacking Franco.

Vasilio explains to Emmanuel what is happening. This is a trippy movie. The possessed people are innocent and the demons are making them do horrible things. Father Vasilio has Beatriz (Yunuen Pardo) and her son Isa (Liam Villa) who is supposedly the new Messiah.

Joaquin Cosio and Tobin Bell are so good in the roles they play. This is a beautifully shot film. Now, they are trying to move Isa to “safety.” Detective Ritter isn’t acting like himself again. This movie is unnerving.  Films about possession and demons are not meant to be comfortable. The Exorcist (1973) is a film that scared the crap out of many people. It was unnerving and possessed people don’t have filters or compassion.

Supernatural films or demonic related films can be fascinating and scary as Tobin Bell said during an interview with Horrornew.net. Films like, The Conjuring, The Amityville Horror, Insidious, Hereditary, The Exorcism of Emily Rose, The Devil’s Candy, The Omen, Along Came the Devil, Poltergeist, The Taking of Deborah Logan, Fallen, The Haunting in Connecticut, Burnt Offerings (1976), Christine (1983), Night of the Demons (1988), Shock (1977), Session 9 (2001), Evil Dead and more.

It is demons, the devil, a force? Who knows? This film is creepy, unsettling, it hits a few nerves. The subject matter is a lot to digest yet, it is also stuff that has sadly happened in reality. Human beings do horrible things in the world. Emilio Portes made a film that shows what humanity is capable of.

Detective Ritter may have been susceptible of possession because he wanted his family back so badly. Father Canetti, Agent Franco and Beatriz must save Ritter. Canetti comes up with a way to “save” Ritter. This cast does a good job. There is something still shady and deceitful about Father Canetti. The special effects and the colors, the shots in this film are unreal. The cross rising and slamming down and possessed Ritter is a savage.

There is quite a twist. The imagery, the symbols. The amount of work that went into this movie. Make sure to check out Belzebuth.

BELZEBUTH is available on VOD, Digital HD, DVD and Blu-ray listings for July 7, 2020







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