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Priest (2011)

PG-13  |   |  Action, Fantasy, Horror  |  13 May 2011 (USA)
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Ratings: 5.7/10 from 92,870 users   Metascore: 41/100
Reviews: 230 user | 224 critic | 13 from Metacritic.com

A priest disobeys church law to track down the vampires who kidnapped his niece.



, (graphic novel series "Priest")
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3 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Monsignor Orelas
Shannon Pace
Dr. Tomlin


PRIEST, a post-apocalyptic sci-fi thriller, is set in an alternate world -- one ravaged by centuries of war between man and vampires. The story revolves around a legendary Warrior Priest from the last Vampire War who now lives in obscurity among the other downtrodden human inhabitants in walled-in dystopian cities ruled by the Church. When his niece is abducted by a murderous pack of vampires, Priest breaks his sacred vows to venture out on a quest to find her before they turn her into one of them. He is joined on his crusade by his niece's boyfriend, a trigger-fingered young wasteland sheriff, and a former Warrior Priestess who possesses otherworldly fighting skills. Written by Screen Gems

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Vampire Killer See more »

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for intense sequences of violence and action, disturbing images and brief strong language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:

| |  »



Release Date:

13 May 2011 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Priest - El vengador  »

Box Office


$60,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

£396,038 (UK) (6 May 2011)


$29,136,626 (USA) (17 June 2011)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

| |


Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The girl Priest is looking for is called Lucy. This is a throwback to the Dracula of Bram Stoker, where there is also a character named Lucy, who is also an engaged redheaded girl in need of saving. See more »


When Priest readies himself to leave the city, his hands change from being wrapped to unwrapped then back to wrapped when he gets his motorcycle. See more »


Priest: [Hicks has finally grown a pair and saves Priest's life] You would have made a good priest.
Hicks: Thanks!
Priest: [Small pause] Don't let it go to your head!
See more »


Referenced in Midnight Screenings: Bad Teacher/Cars 2 (2011) See more »


Mozart: 3. Sequentia: Dies irae (Requiem in D minor, K. 626)
Written by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Performed by Berliner Philharmoniker - Conductor Herbert von Karajan, Organ: Rudolf Scholz, Choir: Wiener Singverein, Chorus Master: Helmuth Froschauer
Courtesy of Deutsche Grammophon GmbH, Hamburg
Under license from Universal Music Enterprises
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Short, slick and vacuous.
7 May 2011 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

Based on the long-running Korean comic of the same name, Priest is one of those films that's been stuck in development hell for the last few years, running a gauntlet of director and lead actor changes and more recently, coping with a series of release date delays in order to facilitate the inevitably shoddy post-production conversion to 3D that's currently so beloved of mainstream cinema.

The added dimension isn't going to win any prizes - for the most part it is relatively pointless, and the world in which Priest takes place is not interesting enough to require any additional depth.

The ever-reliable Paul Bettany stars as the titular character. Stoic to the end, he's not your typical priest - more a deadly weapon, specialising in martial arts and weapons skills that make him the perfect killer. He exists in a time where vampires are a horrifying reality, battling humans for control of a conflict-ridden, barren wasteland punctuated only by large, soulless, church-controlled cities where humans live only for their faith and 'an honest day's labour'.

You don't watch films like this expecting an Oscar-winning tale, and action-wise, Priest is fairly solid, packing in a series of high-octane fights and chases for its duration. Helmer Scott Stewart knows where to put a camera in order to maximise the impact upon the viewer, and the oil-slick manner in which everything is filmed shows a director moving away from his previous field as a visual effects specialist and having a decent stab at mastering his craft.

Unfortunately, there's not a lot going on when knives and bullets aren't being flung around - the supporting cast of Cam Gigandet, Maggie Q and Karl Urban are given next to nothing to do and the dialogue serves only to move the film along to its next set-piece. Story-wise, it's paper-thin, and it's difficult to care about the motivation of any character when the levels of emotion on display resemble that of Mount Rushmore.

It is also strangely edited - 87 minutes is very short for a film with this kind of budget, and there's all manner of blunt cuts that give credence to the theory that there was once a longer, potentially better film here.

So, was Priest worth the wait? Not particularly, but for all its faults, it certainly has promise. Depending on box office performance, it could really benefit from a deeper, beefed-up sequel along the lines of Blade II. The good news is that there's plenty of source material available for a return to this mythology - it's just a shame that it's as shallow as the film it's spawned.

153 of 190 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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