The Rite (2011)
Plot: Despite his conviction that demonic possession is just so much superstitious mumbo jumbo, Catholic priest-in-training Michael Kovak (Colin O’Donoghue) journeys to Rome to attend a special exorcism school being taught at the Vatican. Before long, true-believer Father Lucas (Anthony Hopkins) introduces the young cleric to the devil’s power firsthand. Director Mikael Håfström helms this graphic supernatural thriller inspired by a true story.
My Review: The movie starts out with our lead character, Michael, at a funeral home, attending to one of the dead, as its his families business. He later is talking with his friends when he tells them he’s decided to go to college to become a priest. In his family your either a mortician or a priest. So for the next four years Michael goes to school to become a priest, but he loses his faith, and tries to resign from the priesthood. Only his teacher won’t allow him to without trying something different. He asks that he try a class in Rome to become an Exorcist instead.
So Michael goes off to Rome to study exorcisms. There he meets a young journalist who he pals around with briefly, and he meets and works with Lucas (Anthony Hopkins) on two different exorcism cases. One is the case of Rosaria, a 16 year old pregnant girl, and the other a case of a young boy who claims to see a demon mule…yes, a demon mule. You can even see it at one point in the film. The main focus in the film is Rosaria, but the little boy’s case also mixes in.
Here’s where it’s a little wishy-washy for me. I first of all don’t really care for demon movies, nor do I really care for Exorcism movies. Because they all boil down to the same thing. A person who thinks they are possessed who contorts their body into weird positions, looks creepy, pukes something up, and then gets exorcised. This movies formula is pretty much that, with a death or two mixed in. And I never understand how in movies like this, if demons have the power to move things – as it does in this movie with bending crosses, slamming doors, ripping restraints off…then how come they can’t just attack someone with their powers by say bashing them over the head quickly with an object in the room?
I also didn’t quite get the significance of all the frogs and the bracelet. Why did both the girls have the same bracelet (other then signifying they were both probably possessed). It just seems to me like there was more meaning behind it and it wasn’t included. At one point it seems as though all exorcisms are “the devil” (as one priest says just that I think) but then they say that you must ask the demon its name to properly cast it out, so that would mean there is more then one demon. So is it safe to say that the demon that has possessed EVERYONE in this movie is the same one? I have no idea. Not to mention it seems they wanted to somehow tie it all in with Michael’s childhood, but then skipped it, or made it slightly a mystery. I don’t know. I’m kinda confused about that still.
The movie was way too long, by the last 30 minutes I just wanted it over, all exorcism movies I’ve ever seen, seem to be the same and this one really was no different.
Gore/FX: There wasn’t much going on in this department. Basically the people possessed start looking a little creepy. Especially the person possessed at the end. But that’s about it.
Sexual Content: None, come on did you really think there would be any? The main character is a priest.
Acting: Decent, no issues with it at all. Obviously Anthony Hopkins is the main draw here, but the actor playing Michael held his own.
Overall: Its like 10 other Exorcism movies except it has someone famous in it – Anthony Hopkins. It wasn’t a bad film, it was slightly entertaining, but as I said above, its like a bunch of other movies with the same subject matter and it got boring towards the end. I don’t think I’ll watch it again.
View The Trailer