Holy Rider

Paul Bettany in Priest (2011)

After years of war between the humans and vampires the church not only created walled civilizations to protect the remaining humans but created an order of priests whose job it was to hunt down and terminate the vampires. After years of battle most of the vampires were killed with the remaining few living in their own communities whilst those who had been given the job of destroying them are ostracized and left to live outside of the churches walled communities. But when one Priest (Paul Bettany) learns that his niece Lucy (Lily Collins) has been abducted he along with sheriff Hicks (Cam Gigandet), Priestess (Maggie Q) and Lucy's boyfriend set out to save her before she is turned into a bloodsucker.

"Priest" is one of those movies which has a reasonable idea, people of the cloth who have become vampire hunters in a post apocalyptical world is not bad. I am not saying it is anything new as it is just a twist on the old western of a preacher turned gunslinger with a few fantasy bells and whistles but as ideas go it is one with potential. And some of that potential is built upon such as churches having walled communities and a future where confession is done using microphones and video relay.

The trouble is that the basic idea ends up only used as a vehicle for some action as these men and women of the cloth go on the rampage to save Lucy. Maybe I misunderstood as the concept to "Priest" when I first came across it seemed more high end than just men and women of God going kick bloodsucker butt but that is all it ends up, a kick butt action movie with just this priest concept and its cast to make it stand apart from other action movies about a loved one being taken by bad guys.

Because "Priest" just ends up an action movie the calibre of the cast which is lead by Paul Bettany and features the likes of Christopher Plummer, Maggie Q and Lily Collins ends up wasted. They all give it their best to play characters but their characters end up pretty uninteresting and it becomes a case of look it is so and so playing a character that won't mean much when the movie is over.

What this all boils down to is that "Priest" whilst entertaining not only seems a wasted opportunity but also a waste of acting talent.

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