Unfinished Business (TheProphecy 5: Forsaken, 2005)

Prophecy_5_ForsakenKari Wurher returns as American Allison, who is apparently a grad student, (Wurher is nearly fifty, so…progress?) is the protector of the Lexicon.  The Mysterious Stark has hired Dylan to kill Allison because heaven does not want the new information in the Lexicon to reach human eyes.

Dylan ends up helping Allison attempt to avoid death…and she also enlists the help of Satan again.

So…um, this film did not interest me much at all. There is suddenly a rule where Angels do not kill people. On the other hand, they revive the “Almost Dead Human forced to do an angel’s bidding” deal with the character of Dylan. Stark is nicely ominous, which is no surprise as he is played by Tony Todd.

But that is pretty much the only thing that stands out to me about this film. It faded from my memory pretty quickly and left about the same impression as it’s predecessor. Both films feel more like attempts to simply make a quick buck. Just as before, this lacks any of the deeper dialog of the first three films.

I had not seen the second two films until this year, and I cannot say they were necessary…granted, few films are “necessary”, but plenty are unnecessary but good or at least entertaining.  These last two sequels are neither.

Get You a Bible (the Prophecy 4: Uprising, 2005)

Prophecy_4_UprisingSo, the Prophecy series went dormant. And honestly? I would have been perfectly satisfied with it being a trilogy of films.  But 2005 brought the first of two sequels that were filmed back to back on the cheap.

Set in Bucharest, American Allison discovers the Lexicon, a religious manuscript that is still writing itself. It is writing a new chapter of Revelations, and demon Belial wants it. Satan wants to stop this and enlists a cop with a secret connection to Allison.

So, pretty much the only angels here are of the fallen kind.  Satan verses demons. The war in Heaven may be over, but hell is not doing so well. So, yeah, Satan is the good guy here by default.

This film feels nothing like the first three, and lacks the thoughtful dialog. This is a pretty boring film and I just could not get into it.

 

I took the name for this post from a Christian Rap group called Preachers In Disguise, or P.I.D. for short.  Which was not well thought out, since a search for “P.I.D.” brings up a ton of links about Pelvic Inflammatory Disease.

Teens vs Angels (The Prophecy 3, 2000)

Prophecy_3_The_Ascent_PosterPicking up several years after the second film, Danyael (the son of Jennifer Beal’s character) has grown up an angry young man who has refused to accept his place or that the world is part of something bigger. Life is cold…God is dead…there is no grand design.  He has a gathering of followers. However, angels still are seeking to destroy him.

Meanwhile, Gabriel has begun to have a change in his understanding. Having spent years as a human, he realizes he has some atoning to do. He works to protect Danyael and set him on a proper path. This includes taking on the angel who replaced Gabriel in the  opposition to God, Pyriel. Pyriel has an agent, Zophael, who is using Danyael’s girlfriend to track him down.

This film is a strong continuation of the themes from the first film. The finding of lost faith is there, but there is also a strong redemption arc, focused on people atoning.

I really liked the final film in a nice little religious fantasy films.

“It’s Not a Blind, Indifferent Universe, Danyael. It Never was.”

Babies and Angels (The Prophecy II, 1998)

The Prophecy_2_PosterGabriel is back…because hell got tired of him.  Really, really tired of him. And so he gets back in league with his fellow rebelling angels. This time they are trying to prevent a union between and Angel and a woman. The resulting child could shift the war in favor of the Angels still loyal to God and man.

This film continues a lot of the ideas and motifs as the first film. It is a bit clunky at times, but is largely a pretty workable sequel with some fine performances. Walken  has a real feel for where Gabriel should be in this film.  Eric Roberts plays his opposition with a sense of authority. Jennifer Beals i s good in a somewhat thankless role as the character reacting to everything happening to her.

The film ends on a pretty interesting note with a nice comeuppance for Gabriel. For the most part, I enjoyed this second film in the growing franchise.

Monsters and Angels (The Prophecy, 1995)

Prophesy_PosterThomas Dagget once was on the path to the priesthood, but on the day of his ordination, he had a vision of war and destruction, angel against angel.  This put him on a new path…that of police detective.

Meanwhile, Angels are walking the earth to try and resolve their conflict.  Gabriel and his fellow angels are upset that God favors man above angels. This has resulted in a war that has been in a stalemate. Gabriel has angels seeking the soul of a recently deceased General who was a very evil man in life. Simon is an angel who is trying to keep this soul from Gabriel and his minions.

Simon reaches out to Dagget, who then gets pulled into this war in the heavens.

The Prophecy is probably one of my favorite religious fantasy films.  It has a lot of great dialog.  Some is short, like the discussion between Simon and Dagget where Simon asks if he is a part of God’s plan. Thomas responds that it is a complicated question…Simon quietly says back “No it isn’t.”  And this is the ongoing question of the film…is there a plan? Does faith matter? Is belief of value?  It explores these things in a thoughtful manner.

There are scenes where Satan appears (played by Viggo Mortenson) to the leads, and he has some great dialog.  Walken is great as the angel Gabriel. He is ominous and yet, there is a weird sense of humor to him.  The film builds intriguing mythology…one is that Angels cannot drive.  This forces Gabriel to get human minions…to do this, he finds souls on the verge of death and forces them to stay on earth in bodies that are still dead.

The film has some neat visuals, such as how the angels all perch on objects like birds throughout the films.

The prophecy is an intriguing film and a satisfying watch.

Panic Inducement

satanic_panicHello and welcome to October at Tripping Through Gateways!!! As with Every October, this month is going to be filled with the scary movies. This year’s theme is Satanic Panic.  This means all the movies I am looking over will have religious connections.  Of course, God and the Devil, angels and demons…light versus dark…all at war with each other. The Exorcist Films and the endless series of films they spawned. The Prophecy movies, the Omen films…countless knockoffs…and also, I am throwing in Hellraiser for good measure.

Hellraiser really doesn’t get all that religious, to be honest, certainly not in the fashion of, say the Omen or the Exorcist. But I have not gone through the series on the blog yet. To be quite frank here, the Hellraiser franchise has one of the worst bad to good ratios of any iconic franchise…often, even when there is a good idea…it gets buried under crap.

So, everybody…let’s panic!

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