The Great Wall of Horror: May the Devil Take You (2018)


After a bit of a holiday break, The Great Wall of Horror is back with another scary on from Indonesia called May the Devil Take You.

Wow, it has been a while. The holidays were killer and 2019 is turning out to be just as crazy but I am back with your dose of amazing Asian horror from across the continent, at least that’s the goal but it seems like we just can’t get out of Indonesia.

I don’t know why Netflix has been all about Indonesia lately, but I’m not mad. When most people think Asian horror, Japanese horror is the first thing to come to  mind and then maybe Korean, especially after Train to Busan. But I’m here to convince you that Indonesian horror is some of the scariest out there and another example of that is in the film May the Devil Take You.

May the Devil Take You (Sebelum Iblis Menjemput) is a 2018 release that was just added to Netflix. It’s written and directed by Timo Tjahjanto (V/H/S/2) and stars Chelsea Islan (Headshot) as Alfie, Pevita Pearce (The Sinking of Van Der Wijck) as Maya, Ray Sahetapy (The Raid: Redemption) as Lesmana, Karina Suwandhi (Dear Nathan) as Laksmi, Samo Rafael as Ruben, Hadijah Sahab (Mata Batin 2) as Nara and Ruth Marini (Wiro Sableng 212) as The Priestess.

Image courtesy of Screenplay Productions/Legacy Pictures

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The story follows Alfie. After her father leaves her mother for another woman and a new family, they become estranged. When he becomes mysteriously ill after going bankrupt, she joins his current family at the hospital to visit. She finds that his villa is in her name and his current wife wants to sell.

So she heads to the villa to go through his things and try to find out what is going on. The tensions are high because they don’t exactly get along and what they find is a heavily chained basement door. It would seem Daddy Lesmana didn’t get all of his money on his own and it’s time to pay up.

This film is heavily supernatural and brutal. It doesn’t shy away from the gore but also includes more classically scary and eerie moments/effects. One of my favorite moments is in the beginning in Lesmana’s hospital room. You never really see the entity, but it is hidden as a silhouette behind a hospital divider and that is so effective.

While sometimes the effects can get a tiny bit hokey, it could have easily been remedied by showing less. That, however, did not take away from the film’s scariness. I had a lot of fun watching it and you will too.

You can stream May the Devil Take You on Netflix. If you need more recommendations, check out The Great Wall of Horror for Mata Batin, Pengabdi Setan, and Pee Mak.

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