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Neill Blomkamp’s Demonic trailer crosses The Matrix with possession

The District 9 directors new movie also involves priests with machine guns

Picture of a large demonic creature on old, yellowing paper

The trailer for director Neill Blomkamp’s Demonic has been released, and it’s quite a lot to take in. The horror movie crosses sci-fi with supernatural elements for a high-concept story of familial grief.

When her mother (Nathalie Boltt) commits murder during a psychotic episode, a young woman played by Carly Pope attempts to reach via neurological connection. the two meet in a simulation of the mother’s mind, and what they discover is that something dark and menacing is prowling within. Soon, Pope’s character can’t tell the different between the simulation and reality.

The premise is very similar to 2000’s The Cell, a science fiction movie with the same idea, except it’s Jennifer Lopez in a serial killer’s subconscious. Technology has come a long way since then, and Blomkamp’s take gives a very sinister first impression, machine gun-wielding black-ops priests not withstanding. The thriller movie was filmed during lockdown, under full safety precautions, something that will no doubt add to the creepiness of it all. Chris William Martin costars.

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Blomkamp kept his cards close to his chest on this one, surprise dropping the trailer, and revealing an August release date. It’s his first movie in six years, since 2015’s Chappie, and he’s got a few irons in the fire.

Pre-lockdown, in 2019, he was prepping to shoot Inferno, another sci-fi film. Presumably that’s on pause until it becomes easier to put together bigger productions. He has a sequel to District 9 that’s been in the works for sometime, too, which he said will draw on American history in fashion or another.

Demonic will be available through VOD on August 20 in the US, and August 27 in the UK. For more scares, here’s the best horror movies on Netflix.