Evil through the ages.
Father Gabriele Amorth (Russell Crowe) has performed thousands of exorcists, ordained by the highest power, the Pope.
His peers and seniors view his role as dubious at best and while the majority of said ‘possessions’ were related to mental health, a small percentage were of demonic origin.
Based on Father Gabriele Amorth’s recounts via his books this film is based on true events and centres around an American family who has recently had a tragedy.
Julia (Alex Essoe) lost her husband due to a vehicle accident and has two kids, a teenage girl and young pre-teen son who has not spoken a word since the crash.
The year is 1987 and the family travel to Spain to renovate an old Abbey that was left to Julia by her husband upon his death.
As the construction crew are refitting the decrepit Abbey they find a hidden section behind a crumbling wall.
After one of their workers is hurt badly the crew become superstitious and cancel the contract.
At the same time Julia’s young son, seemingly becomes ill and medical doctors cannot find the cause.
As his illness deepens strange things also begin happening around the Abbey.
Eventually a Catholic Priest is called in and instantly he recognises the possibility of a possession.
Father Gabriele Amorth is commissioned to visit the family and what plays out is a deep story in to the dark past of the Catholic Church.
Russell Crowe as Father Gabriele Amorth is on point and I’ll admit, I raised an eyebrow or two when I’d heard he had taken this role. But no, he is brilliant.
The film was not as slow as I thought it would be either. The horror escalates quickly and is the dominant flavour throughout the film.
I couldn’t help but notice some similarities between The Pope’s Exorcist and 1973’s The Exorcist. Fans of the earlier film will notice this too.
In all The Pope’s Exorcist was enjoyable, failed to offer anything wholly new to the genre but has the right amount of jump scares, overall creepiness and dark story for any horror fan.
Running Time: 103 MIN
Director: Julius Avery
Starring: Russell Crowe, Daniel Zovatto, Alex Essoe, Franco Nero
Production Studio: Screen Gems
Distributor: Sony Pictures