Monday, January 17, 2011

Prince of Darkness (1987)

IMDB Link:
Prince Of Darkness

Directed By:
John Carpenter

Summing It Up:
A group of college students, hired for a research project, join their professor and a priest as they attempt to unlock the mystery of a cylinder that was found in the basement of an old church. Unfortunately for them, it turns out that the substance inside of it may have a sinister connection that could cause the end of the world as they know it.

Quick Thoughts: 
For some reason or another, I found myself with an urge to revisit Carpenter's Prince Of Darkness. Maybe it was just because I hadn't seen the film in many years, or it could be because I had heard its name pop up a few times over the last couple weeks... I'm not really sure. Anyway, I think I liked the film even more this time around, and I am beginning to think that it may be one of the Director's more underrated efforts.

This film came shortly after Big Trouble In Little China - which may possibly be my favorite Carpenter film of all time (yes, I love The Thing as well, but Big Trouble is a one of a kind gem) - and Prince's score sounds very similar to that film's in a lot of regards. As always, there is a lot of synth, some droning guitar work, and an air of something other-worldly. The score is easily one of the best things about the film, next to the crazy storyline and sweet practical effects.

There's just something about the movie that makes it unsettling. Maybe it's the creepy homeless people (one of whom is none other than Alice Cooper), or it could be the amount of insects and worms that are all over  the place... Regardless, the film manages to blend Sci-Fi with Horror in a way that only Carpenter could do; with a logic so odd that I'm still not sure what was going on in some parts.

Speaking of that... If I only like the rest of the film, I love the ending. It's one of Carpenter's more open-ended conclusions, and it's filled with a nihilism that I can't help but love. Say what you will, but the man can do bleak endings better than just about anyone else out there.

I know that some don't feel the same way as I do, but overall, I found Prince Of Darkness to be thought provoking and creepy. Sure, it's not perfect, but few films are; even the great ones.


4 out of 5


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