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The Prophecy Review

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The angel Gabriel comes to Earth to collect a soul which will end the stalemated war in Heaven, and only a former priest and a little girl can stop him.

★★★★★

Great idea. So-so execution. The second war in Heaven between God’s angels has reached a stalemate and parties from both sides — Stoltz representing good and Walken as Gabrielle representing bad — arrive on earth intent on capturing the blackest of souls with which to tip the balance in their favour. Said soul belongs to a Vietnam veteran who just happened to have engaged in a spot of cannibalism in the jungles of ’Nam and who, conveniently, has snuffed it in a small town on the Mexican border. Stoltz arrives first and hides the soul within the body of a small girl. Helping him out on the human side are Masden’s school teacher and Koteas’ cop Thomas (as in Doubting, geddit?) who bailed out of the priesthood on the eve of his being ordained when he was inflicted with visions of warring angels which caused him to question his faith, or something.
Widen, the writer of Highlander and Backdraft, here making his directorial debut, scores high on casting — Walken as Gabrielle is truly inspired — but his script takes an interesting idea and goes for too many flash tricks and mythological insights rather than simply running with it and giving us all out angel war on earth. That said, there are some cynical lines of dialogue and a number of deliciously inventive moments, such as when Walken’s Gabrielle “resurrects” a critically ill Amanda Plummer to act as his chauffeur or when Lucifer turns up to offer Koteas his help in overcoming Gabrielle with a “there can only be one hell” refrain. An odd, intriguing little picture with bold ambitions and moderate success.

Good ideas. Average film.