10 Recent Horror Movies That Blew Great Concepts

9. Demonic (2021)

Nocebo horror
IFC Films

Demonic, the first feature film written and directed by Neill Blomkamp since Chappie, sees Carly (Carly Pope) recruited by a group of scientists to help with their research. Carly’s estranged mother Angela (Nathalie Boltt), who’s committed violent atrocities, has become catatonic and trapped within a simulation. It’s Carly’s task to enter her mother’s mind and find out the reason behind her violent behaviour.

As a techno-thriller, Demonic has plenty of potential, especially coming from an accomplished filmmaker like Blomkamp. Anything is possible in this nightmarish simulation, as the environments Carly finds herself in shift and warp to reflect Angela’s fractured state of mind. Likewise, an added supernatural twist serves to make this premise that much more interesting.

In a bizarre move, though, Blomkamp does away with the simulation angle unexpectedly early in the film. With the promising blend of sci-fi and paranormal horror reduced to nothing more than a lazy plot point which allows the mother and daughter to intermittently communicate, Demonic becomes another generic demon affair.

Demonic loses its chance to be noteworthy after abandoning its one solid idea, leaving viewers with a contrived horror outing lacking in any sort of suspense.


Glasgow-based cinephile who earned a Masters degree in film studies to spend their time writing about cinema, video games, and horror.