The theatrical trailer for the long-delayed vampire action movie Priest is finally out, and, in my opinion, it's sufficient proof that this movie will likely not be worth the long wait - though that's not to say that the final product looks totally bad.
Adapted from the graphic novel of the same name by Min-Woo Hyung, Priest stars Paul Bettany as an exiled priest who must save a young girl from the clutches of the vampires.
You might read that explanation and think you're in for a new version of the Dracula mythology - or perhaps another version of The Order, that moody and brooding Heath Ledger movie about a Priest who goes around combating evil forces. However, Priest is directed by Scott Charles Stewart, who also worked with Bettany on the religious-themed action/horror flick Legion last year - think of Priest and Legion as close cousins in the same family.
Here's the film's official synopsis, for those who want to see more:
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.
The "trigger-fingered sheriff" and "Warrior Priestess" mentioned in the synopsis are Cam Gigandet (Pandorum) and Maggie Q (Live Free or Die Hard); they'll be sharing the screen with Bettany and fellow co-stars Karl Urban (Star Trek), Lilly Collins (The Blind Side), Stephen Moyer (True Blood), Alan Dale (Lost) and Christopher Plummer. See if you can spot all the recognizable faces in the trailer - which, for now, is only available at Sony's Crackle website:
As I said, the film doesn't look to be a TOTAL flop (it's certainly an improvement over the first impressions I got from Legion), but then again it's not exactly a film I can say was worth a year's delay. The look of the CGI vampires certainly hasn't been all that improved in a year, and none of the action scenes in the film really got me all that excited. But that's just me.
Why has Bettany - a talented actor - been resigned to genre films with religious themes in the last few years (The Da Vinci Code, Legion)? Will Scott Charles Stewart direct a film that doesn't seem like it walks over the same ground? I'll let you guys debate that and how you feel about the trailer for Priest in the comment section below.
Priest will (attempt to) kick off the Summer 2011 season when it is released on Friday May 13th.