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Deliver Us From Evil Review Critics


Dave White Profile

… mind-blowing nonsense … Read full review

Other Critics provided by

Critics scores range from 0 to 100, with higher scores indicating more favorable reviews.

  • 5.0

    out of 100

    Universal acclaim
    based on a weighted average of all
    critic review scores.

  • 100

    out of 100

    Entertainment Weekly Owen Gleiberman

    Brilliant and psychologically transfixing documentary.

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  • 70

    out of 100

    Wall Street Journal Joe Morgenstern

    Deliver Us From Evil has its flaws. Certain passages are diffuse, others are argumentative, and there's a discomfiting staginess to the climax... Yet the film's concern for the victims, and their families, is one of its strengths.

  • 80

    out of 100

    The Hollywood Reporter Sheri Linden

    With an immediacy and intimacy that news reports can't provide, this deeply affecting documentary explores the pedophile crisis that has shaken the edifice of the Catholic Church.

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  • 88

    out of 100

    USA Today Claudia Puig

    Deliver Us From Evil is so horrifying it makes "Texas Chainsaw Massacre" look like a walk in the park.

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  • 88

    out of 100

    Chicago Tribune Michael Phillips

    Deliver Us From Evil has a few things wrong with it, including an egregious musical score, but without resorting to sucker punches, it takes your breath away while making your skin crawl.

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For Families provided by Common Sense Media

not for kids

Intense child abuse documentary. Adults only.

What Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this intense documentary isn't for kids. Focused on one priest's repeated abuse of children in Southern California during the 1970s and '80s, the film includes many disturbing descriptions and memories. During their emotional interviews, victims and family members use some explicit language. But perhaps more upsettingly, the priest, now retired, describes his past actions in passive language, as patchy memories; the smile on his face suggests that he isn't at all remorseful and remains unaware of the damage he's done.

  • Families can talk about the responsibility of the church in this ongoing scandal. How does the movie present the reasons for the cover-up? Interview subjects say that they can't forgive or forget such betrayal, by both O'Grady and the church hierarchy; how do you think people can deal with this sort of devastation? How does the film suggest that the two victims' journey to Rome was a start toward recovery?

The good stuff
  • message true0

    Messages: Victims and survivors of abuse show great strength and courage, but the included representatives of the clergy show self-interest and denial -- particularly O'Grady, who doesn't really show signs of remorse.

What to watch for
  • violence false3

    Violence: No violent images, per se, but many stories of sexual molestation demonstrate that this is violence against children; one victim angrily recalls where he was sodomized; one victim's father cries out and accuses priest of rape (as opposed to the euphemistic "inappropriate touching") -- his outburst is loud and upsetting.

  • sex false5

    Sex: Ongoing discussion of sexual activity, perversion, and abuse; interviewees (victims and their parents) recall child abuse by priest; priest describes his attraction to young children (in underwear and naked).

  • language false3

    Language: Several (5 or so) uses of "f--k" (in anger); other occasional profanity ("s--t"); language describing sexual abuse (including "penis").

  • consumerism false0

    Consumerism: Not an issue

  • drugsalcoholtobacco false3

    Drinking, drugs and smoking: Occasional cigarette smoking during interviews.