Hell-Bent (2016) – By Misty Layne


“Michael is a writer for Brimstone Magazine. A promotional opportunity comes up and Michael sees this as a way to prove himself as a top writer, and also pay his rent. After discovering that the elderly secretary of the magazine likes to summon a demon for company, Michael bases his article on that.” ~official tagline

Okay, so HELL-BENT is totally cute. The elderly secretary (who isn’t actually that elderly) I was thinking, like, Betty-White-elderly, but she was more like my parents’ age) is super adorable. I so wanted to pinch her cheek! Her demon-summoning spell is the most ridiculous, sweetest little thing I’ve ever seen, I swear. I just awwww’d over her the whole short. And such a fun short it was!

The tagline pretty much says it all. Michael is in competition with a fellow writer (more like she seems determined to destroy him at every turn), when an opportunity for a promotion comes up, whomever writes the best article gets the job, because Brimstone needs something interesting and FAST (I never did figure out what kind of magazine Brimstone was…maybe like the National Enquirer?). Michael is rather the quiet, sticks to himself, helps people out type, and while helping out Agatha (the secretary) after work one day, she introduces him to her…well, basically he’s her demon husband. She drags him out to places and cooks for him, while he complains about work and drinks. It’s all very MAD MEN. Michael sees an opportunity to get ahead at the office, and Agatha is more than happy to help, but writing the article ends up teaching him about more than just the demonic world.

Long story short, I loved it. HELL-BENT is only missing one thing, and oddly, that thing is charm. This movie should be charming as hell, but while it’s amusing and adorable and sweet, there’s just something lacking. I don’t think it’s the script, as I enjoyed the dialogue immensely. Agatha was a doll, Michael was a blah office worker and Mr. Demon was annoying as fuck, so the actors did a good job (although Steven Trolinger as Ricky the demon overdid it just the tiniest bit a couple of times). It’s a…perfectly put-together film that looks wonderful and is a lot of fun but is still just kind of bland. Like having a tasteless but pretty piece of cake.

You should absolutely watch it for the cuteness and silliness though, as it will absolutely make you smile. Visit Facebook and IMDB to learn more about HELL-BENT (and how to summon a demon of your very own)!