Dominion: The Prequel to the Exorcist
Source: Catholic News Service
Subdued yet somewhat involved prequel to the 1973 horror classic set in 1949 British East Africa where lapsed priest Father Merrin (Stellan Skarsgard), wrestling with a crisis of faith wrought by wartime memories of Nazi atrocities, rediscovers his belief to help a possessed native boy after an ancient evil is unleashed by the excavation of a Byzantine church. Sparse on horror gimmicks, director Paul Schrader's more cerebral movie is a marked improvement over Renny Harlin's 2004 gorier "alternate" version of the same story, yet, while thoughtfully exploring the nature of evil, faith, doubt, guilt and forgiveness, the ultimately redemptive, if at times dry, film is hampered by laggard pacing, shaky theology and narrative gaps -- not to mention some cheesy computer-generated effects. Some strong violence, including a graphic suicide, and several grisly murders and executions, demonic violence, a disturbing childbirth scene, a bloody medical procedure and a few racial slurs. The USCCB Office for Film & Broadcasting classification is L -- limited adult audience, films whose problematic content many adults would find troubling. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is R -- restricted.
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