WHEN EVIL LURKS on Shudder (Oct. 27) is a new horror movie from Argentina (org. title: Cuando acecha la maldad). It comes from the filmmaker who gave us Terrified which I loved. Just like that movie, this one has many brutal and shocking moments. Read our full When Evil Lurks movie review here!
WHEN EVIL LURKS is a new Shudder horror movie that will be on the streaming service in time for Halloween, but premieres in theaters first. This horror movie is from Argentina (org. title: Cuando acecha la maldad) and it features one of the least likable protagonists, I’ve witnessed in a while.
The filmmaker has already terrified us a couple of years ago with his movie Terrified (org. title Aterrados). This new movie doesn’t quite hit as hard for me, but it still has moments of pure dread and horror. You just can never feel safe. It’s a brutal hybrid of many other popular horror movies of the past decade, but with a story that is still entirely unique. One that deals with possession in its own way!
Continue reading our When Evil Lurks movie review below. Find it in theaters on October 6 and streaming on Shudder from October 27, 2023.
A different kind of possession movie
With When Evil Lurks, we’re getting Shudder’s first Spanish-language Original. It’s a movie from Argentina about possession and it takes place in a rural part of the country. You will be enjoying a lot of familiar horror elements while also getting several contemporary twists. Mostly, and not uncommon for this filmmaker, extreme and unexpected twists tend to happen. Brutal and intense.
In When Evil Lurks, we meet two brothers living in a remote village. There, they come across a demon-infected man. He is extremely swollen and full of rot and pus. They even refer to him as a “rotten” person. He has been demon-infected (or possessed, as we would call it normally) for quite some time and is just about to give birth to evil itself.
Obviously, this is not something anyone wants in their village. The two brothers jump into action with the help of some neighbors. Unsurprisingly, anyone who has suffered any kind of misfortune is ready to accept that it’s really this demon that is to blame.
Unfortunately, these men are more clumsy and desperate than they are efficient, so instead of battling evil, they seem to help the demon deliver the inferno. Okay, I’m oversimplifying, but they really aren’t very good at doing what they’ve set out to do.
An actual anti-hero
Of course, it doesn’t help that the main protagonist is somewhat of an anti-hero. The man just cannot listen or act as he should. At first, I let it irritate me, but then I realized it’s both realistic and continuously explained via examples that it’s who he is.
Again and again, we hear how he hasn’t been there for his kids, that he has a restraining order against his ex-wife, and you realize he keeps bringing evil into the lives of those he claims to love. All in the name of fighting evil, but he keeps breaking the classic Scream rule; Running up the stairs when he should be running out the front door.
He could take the evil with him and run away from those he loves, but instead, he runs towards them. To save them, sure, but he knows he has a demon on his heels.
When Evil Lurks stars Ezequiel Rodríguez, Eduardo Salomón and Silvia Sabater. The cast works brilliantly and there’s also a gorgeous dog that you’ll see featured in plenty of press material. I won’t speak to the fate of the dog, but I will say that this movie is brutal. Both when it comes to all kinds of animals, the elderly, and even kids. No one is safe!
Think of movies such as It Follows (2014), Fallen (1998), Becoming (2020), or even, to a point, a movie like Lifechanger (2018). If you like any of these, When Evil Lurks definitely has a lot of solid horror moments in store for you!
Watch When Evil Lurks in theaters and on Shudder
When Evil Lurks is a very original and unique take on a possession film. It comes from the Argentine master of horror, writer-director Demián Rugna, who brought us Terrified. Now, I loved Terrified so my expectations were extremely high for this one. I don’t know that it could ever quite reach these expectations, but it did come close at many times.
To be fair, I just enjoyed the story of his previous movie more. I’m certain others will prefer the story of this 2023 horror movie more, so it’s just a question of preferences. I will, however, say that I felt it was a bit longer than it needed to be. Maybe this is part of the reason why it didn’t hit quite as hard.
However, make no mistake When Evil Lurks (org. title: Cuando acecha la maldad) is brutal in so many ways. If you can watch this in a movie theater, you should definitely jump at the chance. Otherwise, you can enjoy it on Shudder in time for Halloween. And you should. You really should!
When Evil Lurks is in US & UK theaters from October 6, and you can stream it on Shudder from October 27, 2023.
Director & Writer: Demián Rugna
Cast: Ezequiel Rodríguez, Demián Salomón, Luis Ziembrowski
Set in a remote village, two brothers find a demon-infected man just about to give birth to evil itself. After warning the neighbors in town, they decide to get rid of the man but merely succeed in helping him to deliver the inferno.