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I Sold My Soul To Satan (2010)
Director: David Vaz

review by Mark West

Expecting a cheap and tacky horror film (this comes from Chemical Burn Entertainment - I have to use that last word, it's in their title - who made the enjoyable Marvin), I was surprised to find that this was actually a documentary (or a reality show; one or the other). I was hoping it would still end up as fiction, with perhaps some showy special effects at the end, but no.

Opening with the director, David Vaz, saying he had this cool idea for making a documentary about people selling their souls to the devil, we then see the sad Hollywood wannabes who are so desperate for fame that they'd even consider this as a serious suggestion. From this line-up, 40-year-old Kai Blackwood is chosen. He's the leader of a metal band called the Tokyo Death Squad, who's been "this close" to the big time on several occasions and still wants to make it. In fact, all of these wannabes are the same, as a title card announces, they all want fame and success, but none of them ask for world peace.

Blackwood links up with Jymie Darling, an occultist, who guides him in the black arts and we follow him shopping in a Satanist cash-and-carry and generally wittering on. Jymie gets plenty of screen-time too and blimey, she likes to talk, incessantly... about anything she can think of. Over the course of an hour, we get plenty more talking heads, all of whom witter on about whatever seems to take their fancy until we get to a section on Robert Johnson, the blues player who - by all accounts - sold his soul to the devil. This is news to Kai, which makes you wonder just how much research he put into this. As the minutes tick by towards the end, Blackwood continues to make his preparations and then it's time for the final ceremony.

With no real resolution - we don't find out what happened at the ceremony, we have no more understanding of the black arts than when we started watching, and Blackwood has started a new, apparently successful career, as an independent film-maker - this seems to have nothing to say and therefore fails as a documentary (especially the 'one year later' bit). Unless you have a dying need to watch everything to do with the black arts, you're probably safe avoiding this.

I Sold My Soul To Satan

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