Review: SATANIC PANIC Has Some Devilishly Fun Moments


Goofy fun at times, but distractingly cheap at others, Satanic Panic is an interesting B-movie horror-comedy for the midnight crowd.
Technical Merit

Satanic Panic, directed by Chelsea Stardust, is yet another wacky new horror-comedy set in the world of Satanists. Although it ultimately goes too far with its tongue-in-cheek humor to be able to be taken seriously, it is a mostly entertaining and breezy film if you are willing to turn your brain off and embrace the absurdity.

The movie is about a pizza delivery girl who, while delivering the last order of her first day on the job, gets caught in a game of cat-and-mouse when a group of white-collar Satanists hope to use her in their sacrifice. The story, while fun and packed with energy, isn’t unlike most other survive-the-night thrillers, the comedic edge being the only thing that sets it apart.

That said, the humor of the film is annoyingly repetitive. Many of the gags in the movie are repeated over and over again until they aren’t funny anymore, and few of them were particularly original anyway. Pretty much every film about cults and/or Satanists jokes about virgin sacrifice, so there is no reason for that to be the primary source of humor in a movie anymore — the joke is worn out.

The most entertaining moments in the film are the visual gags, but they are few in number and far between. The three or four memorable sequences are those in which the movie fully and unabashedly embraces its inherent silliness, although even those sequences aren’t entirely original. (Perhaps the single best scene in the film involves a drill-bit strap-on, but that is a concept that was already used in American Horror Story.)

satanic panic ritual
Arden Myrin as Gypsy Neumieir in the horror film
SATANIC PANIC, an RLJE Films release. Photo courtesy of Eliana Pires.

The character development is also sadly lacking. Sam does eventually come into her own as a horror heroine, but for quite a while, she’s a rather dumb character that simply lets things happen around her. Unlike the most effective horror protagonists, Sam lacks the ingenuity and wit that is so compelling. Yes, she is likable and charming, but she needed a bit more to be totally lovable.

The special effects during these sequences are surprisingly good, although the cinematography, production design, and editing are distractingly simple and artificial-looking. Although some slack can be given to the movie because of its low budget, that doesn’t change the fact that it is hard to get absorbed into the film’s world because of how cheap it looks.

Haley Griffith does a solid enough job in her leading role, but the eclectic supporting cast frequently steals the scene from her. Rebecca Romijn plays the leader of the baddies, and her performance is admirably goofy and over-the-top. Jerry O’Connell again appears in type as the ignorant dudebro, but he is still fun to watch. The brightest star in the supporting cast, though, is Arden Myrin, who gives an absolutely hilarious turn as Romijn’s sidekick.

Satanic Panic definitely has a lot of charm, but it never fully reaches its potential. Apart from a few funny and memorable gags, this movie sadly won’t have much that will appeal to audiences outside of its core midnight crowd.

Satanic Panic hits theaters and VOD on September 6.


‘New Neighbors’ Ep. 1 Official Clip | Back to Life | SHOWTIME

Miri Matteson meets her new neighbors. Starring Daisy Haggard, Geraldine James, and Richard Durden. Back to Life premieres Sunday, November 10 at 10/9c on SHOWTIME. #BackToLife Subscribe to the SHOWTIME YouTube channel: Don’t have SHOWTIME? Order now: Get SHOWTIME merchandise now: Get more SHOWTIME: Follow: Like: Instagram: Website:…

Judith Trains With Michonne | Walking Dead Facts and Easter Eggs Season 10 Ep. 1

Judith learns how to use her katana, plus more facts and easter eggs from season 10 episode 1 of The Walking Dead. Watch easter egg videos from The Walking Dead: Subscribe to The Walking Dead on YouTube: #WalkingDead #TheWalkingDead #WalkingDeadPopUpFacts THE WALKING DEAD: Like The Walking Dead on Facebook: Follow The Walking…

Singapore Social | Official Trailer | Netflix

Peer into the lives of young Singaporeans as they defy expectations and traverse the tricky terrain of career, romance and family. Watch Singapore Social, Only on Netflix: SUBSCRIBE: About Netflix: Netflix is the world's leading internet entertainment service with over 158 million paid memberships in over 190 countries enjoying TV series, documentaries and…

Next on the Series Premiere | Back to Life | SHOWTIME

When Miri Matteson returns home from prison after eighteen years, she stumbles back into adult life in the coastal town she once knew, while the shadow of her past looms large. Starring Daisy Haggard, Geraldine James, and Richard Durden. Back to Life premieres Sunday, November 10 at 10/9c on SHOWTIME. #BackToLife Subscribe to the SHOWTIME…

Dublin Murder | Opening Credits | STARZ

“No one knows the whole truth.” Based on the acclaimed novels by Tana French, here are the opening credits for Dublin Murders. Watch Dublin Murders now on the STARZ app: #DublinMurders Check out social links for Dublin Murders: Subscribe to the STARZ YouTube Channel: Get your free trial of the…

All American | Season 2 Episode 6 | Hard Knock Life Promo | The CW

Stream new episodes of All American Tuesdays, free only on The CW App: SUBSCRIBE: About All American: When a rising high school football player from South L.A. is recruited to play for Beverly Hills High, the wins, losses and struggles of two families from vastly different worlds - Crenshaw and Beverly Hills -…

Black Lightning | Season 3 Episode 6 | The Book Of Resistance: Chapter One Promo | The CW

Stream new episodes of Black Lightning Tuesdays, free only on The CW App: SUBSCRIBE: About BLACK LIGHTNING: Jefferson Pierce is a man wrestling with a secret. Nine years ago, Pierce was gifted with the superhuman power to harness and control electricity, which he used to keep his hometown streets safe as the masked…
Sean Boelman
Sean is a film student, aspiring filmmaker, and life-long cinephile. For as long as he can remember, he has always loved film, but he credits the film Pan's Labyrinth as having started his love of film as art. Sean enjoys watching many types of films, although some personal favorite genres include dramatic comedies, romantic comedies, heist films, and art horror.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here