The plot for Prey for the Devil goes something like this, Sister Ann (Jacqueline Byers) thinks she’s the first female exorcist since she’s been called to do so, but who or what exactly is calling her? Ann decides to enrol in a newly reopened exorcism school after hearing that reports of demonic possession are on the rise around the world. Although the Rite of Exorcism has traditionally been taught primarily to priests, one professor (Colin Salmon) sees Sister Ann’s potential and decides to train her. Sister Ann, alongside fellow student Father Dante (Christian Navarro), finds herself in a battle for the soul of a young girl whom she believes is afflicted by the same demon that plagued her mother many years before. Ann is hell-bent on eliminating evil, but she quickly discovers the Devil has her exactly where he wants her.
Before reading the review you should check out the trailer posted right here.
Right away there is something different about this film vs other archetype films like ‘The Exorcist’. Within the canon of movies about possession, this one breaks new ground by having its main character, a woman, act as an exorcist’s emissary. The fact that only men were traditionally allowed to become priests and study the Rite of Exorcism in the Catholic Church is one of the primary contributing factors that has resulted in a disproportionate number of females being the victims of demonic possession.
The introduction of a female exorcist is an interesting twist, and the film benefits from it, but it isn’t enough to carry the film on its own.
Honestly aside from being a new twist on an old film franchise the movie is just another demonic possession movie. Overuse of fancy vfx and CGI detracts significantly from the terror. The quieter, more suspenseful times are when nothing much is happening, yet anything could. Unfortunately, Natalie’s possessed state doesn’t make her nearly as terrifying as she should be. The climax, a showdown between Sister Ann and the devil that plays out more like a comic book battle than a terrifying horror scene, is a huge letdown. The cinematography is superb, but the lack of suspense and fear is disappointing. The finale is so predictable that even a casual viewer will figure it out before the end.
In all honesty, unless you have absolutely nothing better to do, you should pass on this one.
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