Salutations my screechers, screamers, and scary dreamers,
Tonight’s tale of terror entitled “Let Us Prey” sees a secretive stranger being kept at the county constabulary station start revealing resident’s wrongdoing. Seeing their sins stand revealed causes the community to descend into deception, doubt, and destruction.
Though this has a more religious tone the conceit is like something from “The Twilight Zone” where in the face of something strange normal people horrifically change. This focus on the psychological aspect nearly always earns my respect, but sadly this film never makes much impact because it brutally tumbles in the third act. The finale dropped the atmosphere pretty quick and became an over the top action flick that pushed violence in extremes while eschewing all of the earlier themes.
Once they switched gears from substance to style the proceedings became fairly rank and file making it easy to guess what was in store since we have seen it many times before. Even the kills were never a surprise since they heavily foreshadowed each character’s demise by focusing on a singular object in the room which always spelled a someone’s doom. It was hard to care about anyone’s fate since the character building was never first rate and since each kill was hyper-stylized the impact of their death was never emphasized.
The acting, like the style, was exaggerated with nearly every performance being overstated so much so that by the end it became aggravating since most of the actor’s renditions were grating. As the movie proceeds the only subtlety comes from the two leads who do their best to drown out the commotion and keep the focus on the initial notion. Sadly, even their showmanship cannot right this sinking ship, but it does offer us a glimpse of what could have been had the kinetic energy not cluttered up the screen.
In brief, all in all this was an uneven affair that focused too much on visual flair and never got into any of the meat of what was a generally wonderful conceit.
Stick to the shadows my fine friends.