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The Vatican Tapes (2015) Movie Review By Darrin Gauthier

The Vatican Tapes Review

Director: Mark Neveldine
Writers: Christopher Borrelli (screenplay by), Michael C. Martin (screenplay by)
Stars: Olivia Taylor Dudley, Michael Peña, Dougray Scott

Plot:  A priest and two Vatican exorcists must do battle with an ancient satanic force to save the soul of a young woman.
Running Time: 91 Minutes
Rotten Tomatoes Score: Critics 17%   Audience 62%

Why I Watched it: It’s a horror film and it’s Netflix fault.

Random Thoughts: Possession movies are tricky, along with the Slasher movie it might be the most cliched horror sub-genre, they tend to be paint by numbers productions.  Now the one thing with this film it gives us a two for one, it’s a possession movie and an anti-christ movie, fun wow.

What I liked: Not much, there I said it.  Let me take and breath and try to come up with something positive.  I liked the supporting cast actors, all are wasted but Michael Pena does try real hard and he’s good here and his character does work for the most part.

What I didn’t like: This is a sloppy mess of a film even for a horror film this is just bad.  Nothing in this film holds together and the plot seems so rushed that we never get a bearings, the film seems like a huge cut and paste job.  The characters aren’t fleshed out at all, we never get a sense of anyone or their relationships.  I think the acting suffers here as the characters and motivations are so mucky the actors are having a hard time getting a handle of what they’re dealing with.
I like Dougray Scott and he’s a vet of genre work but here he’s lost, he plays the father and by the end I swear he’s just yelling all his dialogue.  Olivia Taylor Dudley gives a not great performance, I can’t blame here cause the story throws her character around and we never know if she is possessed or why she’s acting like she is.

The biggest flaw this film has is that it’s not only not scary but there is no suspense at all, the cliches have cliches.  They do nothing with the genre and it’s so badly directed we don’t care. Even the set up of the title so all this is on tape and the Vatican has it?  The film starts in one direction, a small story about one women and then by the third act we’re dealing with the end of the world as we know it the film changes from The Exorcist to The Omen very quickly.  The main problem is we don’t get to know these people there’s no stakes at play.  It doesn’t build, almost every scene feels disjointed.  I blame the script mostly but the film is also not edited well.  This is a mess from start to finish, it wastes some good actors but it doesn’t have a story worth telling.

Final Thoughts: Just a really badly made horror film.

Rating: 2/10

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