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Film Review: Priest (2011)
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stainsteelrat
Priest (2011). Directed by Scott Stewart and based on the Korean comic. The film starts with two bits of exposition. Firstly there are some vampire killing priests in a vampire hive, where one of the priests (Karl Urban) is taken by the vampires. Secondly we're given a more general history about a world parallel to ours where mankind has fought vampires for hundreds of years. Mankind eventually dominated vampires when the church trained special priests to have superhuman abilities. Then mankind mostly ended up in dreary walled cities in a post apocalyptic landscape ruined by the perpetual war, and the remaining vampires ended up imprisoned in reservations. Moving forward it is clear that all is not well when a remote outpost, populated by a father, mother, and daughter, is overrun by vampires. The mother is killed, and the father badly wounded, but the daughter is taken. It transpires that the father's brother is a priest, who swears to recover the daughter. To start with Priest feels somewhat fresh. We've seen many a vampire film, but this was a semi-interesting take on the idea by using a parallel Earth. Also the initial set of visuals, including the post apocalyptic cities, are reasonably well done. Further into the film it lurches between a number of other films and genres e.g. 1984, Judge Dredd, Equilibrium, The Matrix, A Fistful of Dollars etc. That's not necessarily a bad thing, but there are several almost direct homages to films which just feel daft. The final 20 or so minutes are probably the worst part of the film, but sensibly they kept the film short and reasonably well paced, at 87 minutes. Aside from that I could have done with some explanation as to why the priests had such superhuman powers, assuming it was ever explained in the comics. A lot less cliché and homage would have helped a bit. Recommended for horror and SF fans who aren't particularly picky and have nothing better to watch. 3/5 (Average)
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Karl Urban rules - his McCoy was my highlight of New Star Trek.

I like Urban also. He has a presence that a fair few actors can't muster. I particularly liked him in Doom, even though it was slammed by the critics.

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