A heavily loaded action/sci-fi flick which swirls around a fictional historic event of a battle between man and vampires. An animated prologue swiftly takes one through all of the matters of history and how everything unfolds in a matter of 5 minutes. How mankind looked to a special breed of man when all failed. None other than the clergy who are the deadliest weapon that mankind has to bring down the raging vampires. The priests as they are called are then removed of all authority and dismissed into society ones mankind overpowered the ruthless vampires, or so they thought they did. Years later one of the priests, is looked up by Sheriff Hicks in the hopes of his alliance to rescue Lucy who has been taken away by the once crushed vampires. The Priest who is ordered to stand down by the church disobeys and breaks his vows in the hopes of finding Lucy. Thus “Priest” unfolds.
Although in a summer where much better movies are been released for us; “Priest” was always one of those that I vowed I would not miss. Mainly since Paul Bettany stars in it and also Scott Stewarts directed it. I enjoyed watching “Legion” that was directed by Scott, although I avoided reviewing it since towards the latter part of it the CGI became from cool to funny in a bad way. Also since Scott Stewart was just getting into the whole directorial scene from being a more of a visuals guy. Maybe this explains why “Priest” consists of fully blown up CGI effects and also has a very appealing ambience to it.
Personally a very slow start I thought it had, I never expected it would have anything good to write about. The unexpected climax in a film that ran for 40 minutes with no sense of saving grace amazingly scrapes its self onto the surface just in the nick of time & wraps it up with some respect. The lack of depth to the characters contributed heavily to the sluggish pace in the beginning and personally I felt even till the credits ran up the screen, the characters never evolved from point A to point B! Poorly written by Cory Goodman and Min-Woo Hyung, if not for the brilliant action choreography and marvelous musical score, this would rate less than 3 stars on IMDB. Sharp thinking by Scott Stewart to empower the movie with additional CGI, Stunt Choreography and a mellow enchanting musical score! Wise choices and smart utilization of his resources I would say.
Paul Bettany was brilliant and is one my most preferred actors on screen as of today. Since Da Vinci Code Paul Bettany has grown in talent and knows how to bring presence on screen. Karl Urban who is a very convincing Black Hat pulls of a very good performance although I feel an actor on the levels of Benicio Del Toro would have given a much more evil presence. That’s just my idea of a good villain.
The only thing I did not get was this, why in the world could they not have done a much better symbol on the forehead, it is quite distracting to see a faded cross on the middle of the face! It’s Hollywood and I am sure they can do a much better makeup of a cross!
Directed by: Scott Stewart
Starring: Paul Bettany, Karl Urban, Cam Gigandet & Maggie Q
Rated: PG 13 for intense sequences of violence and action, disturbing images and brief strong Language.