I Trapped the Devil is a new horror movie from IFC Midnight. The plot is very much a slow burner but the vibe is deliciously creepy. There’s a lot of potential in the debut feature from writer-director Josh Lobo. Overall, I wasn’t as thrilled as I hoped to be!

I Trapped the Devil is a horror movie, but do be warned that it takes slow-burn to a new level. The psychological horror movie is being released by IFC Midnight. As always, this ensures a certain level of quality.

I absolutely adored the creepy vibe of I Trapped the Devil, but the pace was too slow for me. As in way too slow!

The cast, however, is working hard and makes everything work. To me, it just feels like this could have been an extremely powerful short film. Now, it’s a slow and somewhat unfulfilling feature film.

A strong indie cast

The cast of I Trapped the Devil should be enough to get any fan of indie horror and thrillers excited. The movie stars AJ Bowen of You’re Next and A Horrible Way to DieAJ Bowen plays Matt with Susan Burke portraying his wife, Karen. Susan Burke is someone you might recognize from the anthology Southbound. I know I did!

You might also like: Our review of the horror anthology Southbound right here >

In many ways, the true star of I Trapped the Devil is Scott Poythress since he stars as the title character. I mean, he’s the one who believes he has trapped the devil. You might recognize him from various guest roles on TV series like Homeland or Sleepy Hollow. After watching this, you’ll remember Scott Poythress as Steve from I Trapped the Devil.

Also, Chris Sullivan (the TV series This Is Us and Stranger Things) is part of the cast. But do yourself a favor and don’t watch it for him since he really doesn’t feature much in the movie. Visually anyway!

I Trapped the Devil (2019) Review

A debut full of potential

Even though I wasn’t thrilled with the overall experience of watching I Trapped the Devil, I have to admit the horror vibe is strong with this one. Writer-Director Josh Lobo shows a lot of potential which I hope we’ll see more of soon.

More importantly, I hope someone will help tighten the story and pace. While I don’t mind slow-burners (in fact, I tend to love them), this was just too slow for me. However, I could easily have seen this story work perfectly in an anthology setting where it had a runtime of 20-30 minutes instead.

Overall, I Trapped the Devil is a different kind of horror experience and fans of AJ Bowen should enjoy his performance in this. Also, it does manage to get a few jump scares and unexpected plot twists in there along the way.

I Trapped the Devil is out in theaters and VOD from IFC Midnight on April 26, 2019.


Director: Josh Lobo
Cast: AJ Bowen, Susan Burke, Scott Poythress, Jocelin Donahue, Chris Sullivan


A man descends into paranoia after trapping what he believes to be the devil in his basement, but things take a dark turn when his family unexpectedly arrive for Christmas.

I write reviews and recaps on Heaven of Horror. And yes, it does happen that I find myself screaming, when watching a good horror movie. I love psychological horror, survival horror and kick-ass women. Also, I have a huge soft spot for a good horror-comedy. Oh yeah, and I absolutely HATE when animals are harmed in movies, so I will immediately think less of any movie, where animals are harmed for entertainment (even if the animals are just really good actors). Fortunately, horror doesn't use this nearly as much as comedy. And people assume horror lovers are the messed up ones. Go figure!
Karina "ScreamQueen" Adelgaard
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