The Devil All the Time is only good some of the time

Image: Netflix

Throughout The Devil All the Time’s sprawling story — which unfolds across generations, families, and two wars that shaped them all — men go to the woods to seek God, and instead find horror, usually of their own making. That horror stretches outward to the small rural towns of Knockemstiff, Ohio, and Coal River, West Virginia, usually under the shadow of a cross or not far from one. In this film, being a god-fearing person is an exercise in futility because this is a godless land.

The Netflix film, based on the acclaimed novel of the same name by Donald Ray Pollock and directed by Antonio Campos, is a slow-burning rural gothic tale that begins with Willard Russell (Bill Skarsgård) returning home from the War in the Pacific. He starts a…

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