THE DEVIL TO PAY **** USA 2019 Dir: Lane Skye, Ruckus Skye. 87 mins
Living on a farm in the Appalachian mountains, Lemon (Danielle Deadwyler) and her son Coy (Ezra Haslam) are waiting around for her husband Tarlee to return home from work. After a while she finds herself summoned to the home of Tommy Runion (Catherine Dyer) who runs a family of criminals in the area that controls the illegal operations in the county and told the awful news. It seems her husband was working on an assignment for the family and has suddenly disappeared on them which forces the Runion’s to enlist Lemon to find him or else, by the code of their law, Coy will be killed. Now under the deadline and trying to ensure that the code between their families never comes to pass.
Overall, “The Devil to Pay” is pretty enjoyable with a lot to like about it. The main aspect here is the crazy universe that the characters inhabit, offering the kind of setup that provides the use of a code of conduct between the inhabitants in the area. The familiarity and structure of the society in play takes some getting used to in terms of how quickly it drops us into this world but once it works this generates a rather chilling and dark atmosphere that enhances the suspense with the increasing desperation to figure out the truth. Given the setup allows for some brutality at places along the way to enhance the urgency involved here, overall just a few slight personal issues keep this one down as this is highly thrilling.
Review by Don Anelli