“Are you seriously blaming me for being possessed?”
Ava’s Possessions is a 2015 American supernatural horror comedy film written and directed by Jordan Galland. The film had its world premiere on April 26, 2015 at the Dead by Dawn Horror Film Festival. Louisa Krause stars as Ava, a young woman that must learn how to put her life together after a demon is exorcised from her body.
The film opens with a priest (John Ventimiglia) successfully completing an exorcism on Ava (Louisa Krause), who is stunned to find that she has spent the last 28 days possessed by the demon Naphula. She’s initially flippant towards her actions during this time, but soon discovers that she caused serious emotional and physical damage, resulting in her losing her job, friends, and boyfriend, as well as potential jail time.
Ava’s parents (William Sadler and Deborah Rush), sister (Whitney Able), and her sister’s fiancee Roger (Zachary Booth) are all concerned for her and push her into accepting a plea deal that would spare her jail time or commitment in a facility for troubled ex-possessed people as long as she attended a rehabilitation program for the recently exorcised, as possessions are seen as real, common phenomena in this universe.
The program is led by Tony (Wass Stevens), a gruff man that insists that Ava take the program seriously as to do otherwise would just raise the likelihood that the demon would return, as repossessions will frequently happen. Participants will ultimately be tested by wearing a necklace that invites the demon back into their body. If they can pull the necklace off and reject the demon, they graduate since this shows that they are strong enough to deter future possessions. At one meeting Ava meets Hazel (Annabelle Dexter-Jones), a fellow ex-possessed person that wants her demon to return since she enjoyed its presence and felt that it was “special” for both of them.
While Ava is trying to piece together her missing 28 days she discovers blood stains on her apartment floor, which implies that she murdered someone. Ava’s family is of little help, as Ava gets the distinct impression that they are hiding something from her. Her only clue to the person’s identity is an engraved watch that leads her to Ben (Lou Taylor Pucci), who tells her that it belonged to his father. Sure that he is dead as a result of her, Ava lies to Ben about where she gained the watch but ends up reluctantly engaging Ben in a romantic relationship as the film progresses.
Lonely and confused as to what exactly caused her to become possessed, Ava agrees to help Hazel’s demon return via a ritual, which results in Hazel getting committed. The ritual also leaves a tattoo on her neck, which Tony discovers. He throws her out of the program, as the tattoo makes it so easy for the demon to return that the program would be seen as futile. This also ultimately results in Ava’s family choosing to commit her, as they feel that she is too unpredictable to leave on her own.
Ava manages to gain one more lead on Ben’s father via a prostitute, but the woman is murdered before she can tell Ava anything. Ava is then recaptured and is put in a car with Roger, who is to take her to the asylum. However instead of taking her to the facility Roger instead tries to kiss her and reveals that he murdered the prostitute in order to keep her from telling anyone that he had visited her. She then discovers that while she did kill Ben’s father, he was only in the apartment because he was a hitman that Roger had hired to murder her, as Ava had seen Roger with the prostitute and then joined the two of them for a sexual encounter. Roger drives Ava to Tony’s now empty classroom, where he forces her to put on the necklace and bring back the demon.
Can she resist the demon and take off the necklace? Or will Ava be forced to remain Naphula’s slave? Watch and find out…
Finally a new angle on possessions: a film that begins after the exorcism. A film that makes you ask the question, so my demon’s been exorcised, now what? In this universe possessions are commonplace but that doesn’t mean there isn’t a stigma attached. Ava’s Possessions’ starts off strong and you easily fit into Ava’s shoes, feeling off-kilter and unsure of what’s happening. The story follows a mystery and Ava attempting to discover what’s taken place during the last month. I was really behind the main part of the story and thoroughly enjoyed that but unfortunately it gets confused with other sub-plots and characters. But, the parts that were focused were great and it’s not afraid to hold anything back. Overall, Ava’s Possessions is a very unique film – if you’ve seen anything else similar then let me know – and I’d very much enjoy a sequel to expand on this world of endless demon possessions that are merely seen as an extremely inconvenient hangover.
The Final Score - 6/10
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