Starring: Sir Anthony Hopkins, Colin O’Donoghue, Alice Braga
Directed by: Mikael Hafstrom (“1408”)
Written by: Michael Petroni (“Queen of the Damned”)
While it can’t necessarily be considered a work of the devil, “The Rite” is a wicked, wicked thing – a fright-less exorcism story that becomes a tedious slog through the horror movie genre.
Sir Anthony Hopkins tries to tap into his Hannibal Lecter character to play Father Lucas Trevant, an unorthodox exorcist living in Rome who takes a faithless seminary student under his wing to prove to him that the Devil exists.
Michael Kovak (Colin O’Donoghue) doesn’t know what he believes in anymore, but he has decided the priesthood is no longer for him. When his mentor, Father Matthew (Toby Jones), sends Michael to Rome to take a special course on exorcisms, he has no idea Father Lucas will lead him into some of the darkest scenarios he has ever witnessed as a man of the cloth.
Through a mixture of dull philosophical dialogue and a cast of characters devoid of any real insight to the supernatural world they inhabit, “The Rite” is a generic, ham-fisted picture with the usual exorcism set-ups.
“What did you expect? Spinning heads? Pea soup?” Father Trevant asks Michael when an exorcism ends up being as exciting as a knitting class.
If only we were so lucky.