THE UNHOLY (2021) After helping write scripts and stories
Blockbuster films such as The Huntsman: Winter's War (Cedric Nicolas-Troyan, 2016), Beauty and the Beast (Bill Condon, 2017), and Charlie's Angels (Elizabeth Banks, 2019), screenwriter Evan Spiliotopoulos made his directing debut with the horror film The Unholy . The storyline itself begins when a deaf-mute teenage girl named Alice ( Cricket Brown .)) suddenly gained the ability to hear and speak after receiving a “visit” from Our Lady. Of course, the incident immediately shocked the world and made the church where he was cared for by Father Hagan ( William Sadler ) so far considered a holy place. The magic experienced by Alice even attracts the attention of a former journalist named Gerry Fenn ( Jeffrey Dean Morgan).) who are usually skeptical of religious teachings to cover it. Alice even immediately established a good relationship with Gerry Fenn and used it as a means to spread the "messages" conveyed by Our Lady to him. However, after a number of oddities that occurred, Gerry Fenn began to feel something was wrong with the "teachings" of Our Lady conveyed by Alice.
Adapted by Spiliotopoulos from the novel entitled Shrine written by James Herbert , The Unholy is able to offer a number of interesting tales of horror that carry the theme of stories about religion. Granted, in his directing debut, Spiliotopoulos doesn't present a horror story that's really new or special. Even so, it is difficult to argue that Spiliotopoulos has a fairly reliable ability in building and packaging his horror storytelling system. Horror connoisseurs will obviously feel familiar with the mystery that Spiliotopoulos is trying to decipher through The Unholy– especially thanks to the opening scene of the film which seems to open up a wide layer of stories which is actually quite crucial for building the mystery of the film's story. Spiliotopoulos' work in executing the atmosphere as well as the audio and visual appearance of the film makes the storytelling journey of The Unholy far from boring.
This is what makes the final half of The Unholy's story quite disappointing. After going through a fairly well-organized narrative, Spiliotopoulos failed to find a more effective narrative idea to be used as a conclusion for his film. The execution of the third half of The Unholy's story seems so rushed in solving the various mysteries and conflicts that have been built. A number of characters also fail to be given a straightforward story digging. Characters such as Bishop Gayles ( Cary Elwes ), Monsignor Delgarde ( Diogo Morgado ), and Natalie Gates ( Katie Aselton).) is almost used as a mere conflict tool without a really strong story function. As a result, not only does the quality of the storytelling deteriorate, The Unholy then loses all of its ability to be able to leave a deeper impression. It's quite disappointing, especially since this film gets the support of solid acting performances from the line of actors.
Even though they appear bland in describing and developing a number of characters, the appearance of the acting department filler is quite successful in bringing the characters that are present in the storyline of The Unholy to life . This is her first large-scale appearance, Brown is able to steal attention through her ability to make Alice's character as a female character who is both fragile and scary. Brown even managed to give an appearance that was quite parallel to the excellent performance given by Morgan, Sadler, or Elwes who clearly had experience and acting capabilities that were much more senior than him. Overall, The Unholyends up as a dish that is still worth enjoying but fails to take advantage of its various potentials to become a more slick horror dish. forgettable .
BAD SAMARITAN (2018) For fans of the world television
The name David Tennant will certainly never be separated from his involvement in the Doctor Who series – a British science fiction series that has been on the air since 1963. Although he has had a career in acting since the late 1980s, he has even participated in played in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (Mike Newell, 2005), Tennant's name really gained wide recognition from the world public when he was chosen as the tenth actor to play the character known as The Doctor regularly in the Doctor Who series from 2005 to 2010. After Doctor Who, Tennant filled his acting resume by playing in various color variants of characters for a number of television series, films, and stage plays. His role in the film Bad Samaritan directed by Dean Devlin ( Geostorm , 2017) is perhaps one of the most interesting choice of roles in Tennant's acting filmography.
With a story script written by Brandon Boyce ( Wicker Park , 2004), Bad Samaritan presents a story premise that is quite familiar. Two young men who work as car park attendants at a luxury restaurant, Sean Falco ( Robert Sheehan ) and Derek Sandoval ( Carlito Olivero ), apparently use their jobs to rob the homes of a number of car owners they serve. One day, while robbing the house of a millionaire named Cale Erendreich (Tennant), Sean Falco finds a woman ( Kerry Condon) being held captive in the millionaire's study. Failing to free the woman, Sean Falco chose to return to the restaurant where he worked, returned Cale Erendreich's car, and then reported the incident to the police. Unfortunately, Cale Erendreich's ingenuity made the police unable to find any traces to prove the report from Sean Falco. Knowing that someone was trying to harass him, Cale Erendreich began to spread terror that not only ruined Sean Falco's life but also the lives of the loved ones around him.
The premise presented by the film that can be watched through Mola TV does not offer anything new. Even so, Devlin's execution of the story line must be recognized as being able to make Bad Samaritan manage to deliver its moments of tension well. Devlin slowly gives a neat building to each character who is present in the film's storytelling timeline, arranges the mysteries to be revealed throughout the story, to provide an interesting drama presentation in between each mystery narrative. The result, Bad Samaritan successful enough to attract the attention of every audience, make them curious about every intrigue that will be taken by the characters of the story, and present a well-organized mystery story arrangement.
At the same time, with the duration of the story reaching 107 minutes, Boyce's script often feels lacking in power to provide a more solid storytelling. A number of conflicts involving several supporting characters in the film cannot be built properly. The romance that develops between Sean Falco's character and his lover, Riley Seabrook ( Jacqueline Byers .)), tasted bland. Likewise with the relationship building given to the character of Sean Falco with his family members. Like only being used as a supporting element for the plot of the story without ever getting a more established use. Also appearing shallow is Boyce's management of security enforcement characters who are somehow always portrayed as unreliable. A number of flashback scenes used to compose a mystery story from the past of the main antagonist character also almost feels useless thanks to the delivery that tends to be confusing.
Despite these weaknesses, Bad Samaritan continues to be able to tell an interesting story thanks to the direction of Devlin who consistently continues to apply the right rhythm of storytelling and, of course, Tennant's appearance and the line-up of the acting department of this film. Acting as an antagonist, Tennant appears convincing – even terrifying in some parts. Although the Bad Samaritan story script does not provide a wide space for extracting the mystery of the character he plays, Tennant's appearance has succeeded in making Cale Erendreich a very interesting character to explore. Sheehan also appeared not to disappoint. He managed to make his adventure in trying to save an unknown figure appear convincing.
Overall, Bad Samaritan may feel like a mystery film with a number of weaknesses in its narrative. However, with Devlin's slick storytelling and supported by the strong appearance of the film's cast, Bad Samaritan appears quite impressive.
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