Prey for the Devil is a horror movie directed by Daniel Stamm, starring Jacqueline Byers and Virginia Madsen.
A supernatural horror film in which the numbers justify its production: its has so far grossed $42 million. Quite a success (commercially, that is). Artistically, that is another matter.
There has been a rise in demonic possessions on a global scale, forcing the Catholic Church to reestablish exorcism schools to train priests in the Rite of Exorcism. Sister Ann, a young nun, rises to become an unexpectedly talented candidate to ward off evil.Thrust onto the spiritual frontline with fellow student Father Dante, Sister Ann finds herself in a battle for the soul of a young girl and soon realizes the Devil has her right where he wants her.
The director, Daniel Stamm, is quite an expert in horror movies: he has directed a number of them , and with ‘Prey for the Devil’ it has not been the first time he has had to face off forces from beyond. His directorial curriculum includes amongst others the movie ‘The Last Exorcism’ (2010) and Stamm knows how to grab the audience’s attention with the latest special effects. We gather that he must have seen The Exorcist a couple of million times (give or take a million more or less).
So here we have a horror movie directed by somebody who knows his craft, and knows how to create sequences with horrifying effectiveness. He is decidedly good, and it is shines through. He has too, at his disposal the latest technology, and Hollywood technical know-how as far as sound, lighting and effects go to be able to focus properly on the horror sequences, making them impactful and offer a potent visual experience.
The matter: special effects have evolved so much and they strike so much more potently that on a screenplay level everything seems to be conditioned by those sequences, which are impactful, leaving any plot or unfolding of it to become oblique and secondary in the story.
Evidently, and we cannot deny it, it is attention grabbing and the photography is not bad at all, with sets that are well put together and effects of high contrast that are almost brilliant. Imagination, premise, power of suggestion? ‘Prey for the Devil’ does not play with those elements, and places all bets on the sequences, some of them are good, with excellent special effects that clearly has a heavy playing production studio behind, this time it is Lionsgate, that knows how to carry it through.
As stated in the beginning: A horror movie that grossed $42 million? Well that is a success, a well done project, efficient and even exemplary from the a production point of view.
As far as the artistic side of the film…. It is simple, making it easy to consume, and it is subjugated to the special effects. Just see the protagonist, Jacqueline Byers, who is really very hip for an ascetic nun to be – it had to be said.
Is the movie credible? No, a rotund no. But that was not the point of the movie either.
Where to Watch ‘Prey for the Devil’
Jacqueline Byers / Sister Ann
Colin Salmon / Father Quinn
Christian Navarro / Father Dante
Lisa Palfrey / Sister Euphemia
Nicholas Ralph / Father Raymond
Ben Cross / Cardinal Matthews
Virginia Madsen / Dr. Peters
Tom Forbes / Matt
Velizar Binev / Father Bernhard
Owen Davis / Emcee At Pub
See full credits >>
Prey for the Devil (2022)
Movie title: Prey for the Devil
Movie description: There has been a rise in demonic possessions on a global scale, forcing the Catholic Church to reestablish exorcism schools to train priests in the Rite of Exorcism. Sister Ann, a young nun, rises to become an unexpectedly talented candidate to ward off evil.Thrust onto the spiritual frontline with fellow student Father Dante, Sister Ann finds herself in a battle for the soul of a young girl and soon realizes the Devil has her right where he wants her.
Date published: December 12, 2022
Country: United States
Author: Martin Cid
Director(s): Daniel Stamm
Actor(s): Jacqueline Byers, Virginia Madsen, Ben Cross, Colin Salmon, Nicholas Ralph, Christian Navarro, Tom Forbes, Lisa Palfrey, Debora Zhecheva,
A production that bets on the sequences full of special effects and the immediate impacts of its scenes. Is it original? Not quite. But then again, it is not required to be.