#132 -- Killing Ariel (2008)

Directors: Fred Calvert & David J. Negron, Jr.
Rating: 4/5

I'm not really sure how to explain this movie so that you'll understand what was going on, without it being confusing, and with no spoilers. So, I apologize if it is confusing, and there will be some spoilers. Despite the spoilers, though, I don't think it will spoil anything for you. It was about a man named Rick. He was a happily married man with two children, and he worked as an insurance salesman. He was happy, but not without a few problems. Rick's parents were killed when he was younger, and he witnessed a good deal of violence at a young age. It all involved a bald and naked man. Rick was very devoted to his wife and, though he had the chance to cheat on occasion, he never strayed. That was until one night, he woke to a strange woman making love to him. He woke up again, realizing that it was only a dream, though he didn't believe it was a dream at all. He completely believed that this woman had been there with him. Afterwards, though, he started having thoughts that he wouldn't normally have had (he only said this; it didn't really show anything involving his thoughts). He went through a sort of mid-life crisis; he bought a fancy new car and started scoping out beautiful women. He met a young woman named Ariel, and he took her to the house where he lived as a child, for a weekend of wild fun. When he started having more of those vivid "dreams," he started freaking out a little bit, and Ariel got scared. But she stayed with him. After one of these dreams, she decided that he just needed to relax, and they planned on playing a nice game of Chinese Checkers. Rick went up to the attic to find the game, and there was the bald naked man who had killed his parents. The Naked Man spoke to him for a moment before disappearing. He returned behind Rick, and Rick turned and shot him...But it was Ariel who fell, bloodied and dead. Instead of going to the police, Rick buried her out in the woods. He returned to the house, and woke up the next morning with Ariel by his side. At first he couldn't discern reality from his dreams, but he eventually became certain that Ariel was a demon and that she was actually The Naked Man. The man could transform into anyone he wanted. So Rick knew that the only way he could escape this succubus was to kill her. And kill her he did, over and over again. She just wouldn't stay dead. He eventually decided that, if he couldn't kill her, he would cut off her head and stuff it in a pickle jar so he could keep an eye on her. His plans were thwarted by the police, however.

A man who may or may not have been a policeman told Rick that he was a serial killer. Ariel was Rick's mother's name, and Rick was re-living the night his parents were killed. He hated his mother, and thought that he was saving his father from her evil. He killed seven different women, but he believed he was killing Ariel repeatedly. The end left things a bit open, though. It left me wondering...was Rick a psychopathic serial killer, or was there really a demon succubus after him? Since I'd been with Rick since the beginning of the story, I'm tempted to believe the demon was real. But it really could have gone either way. I know many serial killers kill believing (or pretending) that they're killing the same woman, so it is not unlikely.

Some people don't like this movie because there wasn't enough gore, or because Ariel wasn't sexy enough to be a proper succubus. But I say what the hell ever. It was more of a psychological thriller than a horror movie, but I did really enjoy it. It didn't explain everything a hundred percent, but that's not because it failed to properly develop the story. That is what it was meant to do, and I think it succeeded. The pacing was slow, and that might throw some people off. But for me, it worked. So, you might be wondering why I've given the movie only four stars, since I'm speaking so highly of it. That's simply because I wouldn't consider it one of my favorite movies. I did really enjoy it, though. It was definitely an interesting story. It could have been made into more of a horror movie, and that would have the potential to be pretty terrifying in the right hands. But it wasn't made that way, and I'm okay with that. I like it how it is. It's believable, even with the demons and all. Maybe you believe in demons. Or maybe you believe that there are people in the world who see things that aren't really there. Either way, this movie has some reality in it.

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