Critics Consensus

It's better than many of the other films M. Night Shyamalan has been associated with, but Devil never gets more than a few low-budget thrills out of its fiendishly promising premise.



Total Count: 96


Audience Score

User Ratings: 66,998
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Movie Info

Five strangers trapped in an elevator realize that one of them is the Devil in this thriller from director John E. Dowdle (Quarantine) and screenwriter Brian Nelson (Hard Candy, 30 Days of Night). The first installment of "The Night Chronicles," a film series in which up-and-coming filmmakers bring to life stories conceived by M. Night Shyamalan, Devil opens to find five Philadelphia office workers filing into the elevator of an inner-city office building. But a typical day at the office takes a sudden detour into terror when the elevator becomes stuck between floors, and the passengers discover that the Devil does exist, and he's standing right before them. As emergency workers work frantically to free them, secrets are revealed and the passengers realize their only hope for survival is to confront their darkest sins in front of the others. ~ Jason Buchanan, Rovi


Chris Messina
as Detective Bowden
Geoffrey Arend
as Salesman/Vince
Bokeem Woodbine
as Guard/Ben
Jenny O'Hara
as Old Woman
Logan Marshall-Green
as Mechanic/Tony
Bojana Novakovic
as Young Woman/Sarah
Jacob Vargas
as Ramirez
Joshua Peace
as Detective Markowitz
Joe Cobden
as Dwight
Rudy Webb
as Old Janitor
Henry Webb
as Old Janitor
Robert Lee
as Chinese Man
Jay Hunter
as Firefighter
Joe Pingue
as Business Bureau Clerk
Michael Rhoades
as Fire Captain
Kelly Jones
as Firefighter Kurtzy
Lee Oliveira
as Firefighter #2
Jonathan Potts
as Wayne Kazan
Alice Poon
as Officer Choi
Stacy Chbosky
as Car Crash Woman
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News & Interviews for Devil

Critic Reviews for Devil

All Critics (96) | Top Critics (14) | Fresh (49) | Rotten (47)

  • Circling wildly within the film's main set -- a stalled elevator car -- or hurtling up and down an empty shaft, Mr. Fujimoto's camera is as giddy as a tween at a Justin Bieber concert.

    Apr 4, 2011 | Rating: 2.5/5
  • Though the poster bravely boasts this movie as being ''from the mind of M Night Shyamalan'', Devil is actually not an over-long, near-unwatchable piece of badly directed high-concept dross, but a tight little killer thriller.

    Dec 8, 2010 | Rating: 2.5 | Full Review…
  • There's an old belief in TV series production circles that if you're doing a stuck-in-an-elevator episode before Season 4, it's a telltale sign you've run fresh out of ideas.

    Sep 24, 2010
  • A Night Gallery reject worth experiencing only to gape at a "spirituality" that falls somewhere between Dostoyevsky and Jack Chick, and to laugh that such daring feats of narrative illogic were undertaken with a straight face.

    Sep 23, 2010 | Full Review…
  • This is the sort of cut-rate cinematic Cheez Whiz that gives religious horror movies a bad name. Still, at least it's not The Last Airbender.

    Sep 22, 2010 | Rating: 1/5 | Full Review…

    Drew Toal

    Time Out
    Top Critic
  • The great cinematographer Tak Fujimoto has the time of his life on this low-budget horror feature, playing with dolly shots, abrupt zooms, and negative space inside the widescreen frame, and the fun is infectious.

    Sep 21, 2010 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Devil

  • Nov 07, 2014
    Produced by M. Night Shyamalan, Devil is an intense supernatural thriller. The story follows five strangers who get stuck in an elevator and begin to turn on each other after one of them is attacked and killed during a power outage, meanwhile some unknown force seemingly prevents rescue from the outside. The script is especially well-written, and really brings dramatic tension to the situation. The storytelling too is quite engrossing; drawing the audience into the mystery of who the characters are and what is happening. A riveting and well-crafted film, Devil does an extraordinary job at exploring the themes of paranoia and fear.
    Dann M Super Reviewer
  • Jul 18, 2014
    It's not a bad idea per say, but the screenplay is weak. The only mystery is which one of the character is the devil because the film lays out exactly what is happening through a bunch of cliched characters and occasional terrible voice over. This robs the film of any real suspense and by the time they do reveal the devil I had already stopped caring.
    Alec B Super Reviewer
  • Jun 10, 2014
    With such an intriguing premise, this Twilight Zone-esque movie could have been scarier and much more claustrophobic, but it only manages to be a satisfying supernatural Agatha Christie-like story whose merits are due more to its solid direction than to its weak script.
    Carlos M Super Reviewer
  • Nov 25, 2013
    Devil has one of the coolest concepts I've been presented with. Imagine that the Devil was expelled to Earth, and never left. He takes human form and hunts down groups of evil-doers, traps them together in a confined area, then turns them against each other, forcing them to kill one another out of fear, or secretly killing them off himself, before they have a chance to make up for their sins, thusly securing their place in Hell. The Devil's been doing this forever, and with modern-day folk in a modern-day world, he is never in short supply of wicked people or tight spaces. Unfortunately, where it fails is in the writing. The direction of John Erick Dowdle (The Poughkeepsie Tapes, Quarantine) is brilliant, there's no flaw in the acting, the premise is, as mentioned incredible, it's a perfectly creepy supernatural horror set in a suburban nightmare, but it's just not good enough. Sounds ridiculous, but when they chose not to set the entire film in the box (à la Buried) then they have no excuse not to give us some set-up with the characters who we're supposed to be keeping an eye, given that one of them's meant to be The Devil and all, when in actual fact I cared much more about the Police Detective and Head of Security (above), because their interactions seemed genuine, and were actually interesting. It's probably unfair of me to blame the film's problems on M. Night Shyamalan, but I'm gonna do that anyway, because I don't like him. I think he's one of the most self-centred and ridiculous directors out there, which is even worse given that he hasn't released anything of value since The Sixth Sense over 10 years ago (an argument could probably be made for Signs, but personally I don't really care for it, and even taking that into account, he immediately followed that one with the release of The Village, which was an absolute insult to the Horror genre, and don't even get me started on the work he's done since then...). I can forgive the fact this movie revolves around a spiritual entity I don't believe in roaming the Earth killing people for things as lame as "assault" or "investment fraud", I can chock that all down to freedom of exploring the supernatural, and the suspension of disbelief, but if screenwriter Brian Nelson (Hard Candy, 30 Days of Night) seriously expects us to believe that Emergency Services would take several hours to get to a building in city central when a police detective is watching them being killed off one by one, then he obviously has no respect for his audience. The film would almost certainly appeal to enthusiasts of Agatha Christie type works, people who care about South American mythology, and (God help me if they still exist) M. Night Shyamalan fans. I found it to be better than most of his recent work, but ultimately nothing compared to the oh-so-promising premise that we we were offered. 44% -Gimly
    Gimly M Super Reviewer

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