philosoraptor42: (Fatpie42)
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Hellbenders (2012)

A comedy where the concept is rather funnier than the film as a whole. The opening of the film admittedly had me laughing out loud.

The concept is of a sect of 'hellbound saints', a group of exorcists who specifically aim to use the method from the movie "The Exorcist" to defeat the most powerful demons. (You'll remember that in the Exorcist the priest defeats the demon by committing suicide while possessed.) In order to be possessed you need to be impure and the intention is to send the demons to hell, so the Hellbenders are priests who intentionally live in a state of debauchery to be ready to use this technique against demons.

Naturally Clancy Brown (the Kurgan from "Highlander") is on his A-game as the leader of the Hellbenders. But a surprisingly fun addition to the cast is 'Bubbles' from the wire (actor Andre Royo). He plays the bureaucrat of the group, recording all their sins to check they are all 'damnation-ready'. However, it's clear that breaking the rules is against his nature (so he's a far cry from the junkie he plays in The Wire').

There are some great moments and this is a lot of fun, but I think a lot of the appeal for me comes from the twisting of religious concepts. I'm a fan of the "Preacher" comics, the exorcism tv show "Apparitions", my favourite of Terry Pratchett's Discworld novels is "Small Gods". It's a particular field of interest for me. Oh... and Father Ted of course. ;)

There are some cool effects, there're some fun silly elements and there's some humour. I had a pretty good time with this one. But I'm all too aware that if the basic premise doesn't appeal to you, this is unlikely to have the same attraction.

Also some of Clifton Collins Jr's lines towards the beginning of the movie were completely incomprehensible to me so I ended up just leaving the subtitles on.

But I must say, I found the explanation for why there's no superheroes called Clint very amusing indeed. I guess I'm immature like that...

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