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"LOST SOULS"
(2000) (Winona Ryder, Ben Chaplin) (R)

Alcohol/
Drugs
Blood/Gore Disrespectful/
Bad Attitude
Frightening/
Tense Scenes
Guns/
Weapons
Mild Moderate Extreme Extreme Extreme
Imitative
Behavior
Jump
Scenes
Music
(Scary/Tense)
Music
(Inappropriate)
Profanity
Minor Mild Extreme None Heavy
Sex/
Nudity
Smoking Tense Family
Scenes
Topics To
Talk About
Violence
Minor Moderate Mild Mild Extreme


QUICK TAKE:
Horror: A devout woman, a former victim of demonic possession, tries to save a man who's been earmarked to become the Antichrist.
PLOT:
Maya Larkin (WINONA RYDER) is a young, devout woman who works with the Catholic Church in assisting Father Lareaux (JOHN HURT) and deacon John Townsend (ELIAS KOTEAS) in performing exorcisms of those who are possessed by demonic spirits. A former victim herself, Maya and her team arrive at a psychiatric hospital to perform such a ritual on Henry Birdson (JOHN DIEHL), a convicted mass murderer.

The results leave Lareaux incapacitated and Maya attempting to decipher a numerical code that Birdson had been compulsively penning. When she finally does so, the code reveals that the next victim of possession will be Peter Kelson (BEN CHAPLIN), an author and self-proclaimed cynic of evil with a capital E, who writes about mass murderers such as his latest subject, George Viznik (BRAD GREENQUIST).

Peter, who was raised along with his brother, William (W. EARL BROWN), after their parents' deaths, by their uncle, Father James (PHILIP BAKER HALL), doesn't believe in any of what he thinks his pure nonsense. Nonetheless, he doesn't tell his girlfriend, Claire Van Owen (SARAH WYNTER), although she gets the hint when someone tries to kill him one evening, proclaiming that the time of transformation has come.

With friend and local detective Mike Smythe (JOHN BEASLEY) investigating that incident as well as Maya's background, Peter tries to get on with his life. Yet, as strange events begin occurring all around him, it appears that perhaps he is earmarked to become the Antichrist. As such, he and Maya then race against time in an effort to make sure that doesn't happen.

WILL KIDS WANT TO SEE IT?
If they're fans of anyone in the cast or of horror films in general, they might.
WHY THE MPAA RATED IT: R
For violence/terror and some language.
CAST AS ROLE MODELS:
  • Note: To prevent plot revelations that occur late in the film, certain aspects of the following characters won't be revealed other than to say that some of them end up working on the side of evil.
  • WINONA RYDER plays a devout woman set on discovering the identity of the next possession victim who then tries to stop the Devil from possessing that person. She does kill one person to stop the Devil from doing so.
  • BEN CHAPLIN plays a non-religious and cynical author who suddenly finds himself earmarked to become the Antichrist. Understandably, he becomes upset about this and briefly uses some strong profanity. He also ends up shooting and killing several Satan supporters.
  • SARAH WYNTER plays Peter's girlfriend.
  • PHILIP BAKER HALL plays Peter's uncle and priest who raised him and his brother after their parents' deaths.
  • JOHN HURT plays the priest that Maya accompanies during his exorcisms.
  • ELIAS KOTEAS plays a church deacon who assists Maya in her cause.
  • JOHN DIEHL plays a mass murderer who's reportedly possessed by a demonic spirit.
  • CAST, CREW, & TECHNICAL INFO

    HOW OTHERS RATED THIS MOVIE


    Curious if this title is entertaining, any good, and/or has any artistic merit?
    Then read OUR TAKE of this film.


    (Note: The "Our Take" review of this title examines the film's artistic merits and does not take into account any of the possibly objectionable material listed below).


    OUR WORD TO PARENTS:
    The following is a brief summary of the content found in this R-rated horror film. Violence is listed as extreme due to several people being shot and killed, with others being threatened with guns and knives and a man breaking another man's neck. Those scenes (that are somewhat bloody but not graphically gory), as well as all of the supernatural/demonic possession scenes may be unsettling, suspenseful or downright scary to viewers, all depending on their age, level of maturity and tolerance for such material.

    Profanity consists of 2 uses of the "f" word, while only a small handful of other expletives and colorful phrases are also present. One scene has a few brief, but non-explicit lines of dialogue about sex, while various characters drink and smoke. Meanwhile, various characters have varying degrees of bad attitudes, including those who support the Devil. If you're still concerned about the film's appropriateness for anyone in your home who wishes to see it, we suggest that you more closely examine our detailed content listings for specific examples of what occurs in the film.

    For those concerned with the repetitive flashing of bright lights on the screen, a few instances of that occur in the film (but aren't of the strobe variety).


    ALCOHOL OR DRUG USE
  • Peter, Claire, his brother and his wife/girlfriend and Father James have wine with dinner.
  • Peter has a beer.
  • People have drinks at a reception.
  • Peter has a drink.
  • Peter learns that after Maya's parents died when she was thirteen, she got involved in all sorts of bad things such as vandalism, petty theft and drugs.
  • BLOOD/GORE
  • Viznik has a few small, but dried wounds on his face.
  • In what's presumably a vision of some sort, Maya sees what looks like raw sewage spilling out onto and then spreading out across a public bathroom floor.
  • Some blood runs down Maya's finger from the tip where she cut it on someone else's knife.
  • Blood briefly squirts out as several people are shot to death.
  • We see a small bloody bullet hole in a person's head after they've been shot.
  • DISRESPECTFUL/BAD ATTITUDE
  • The evil forces and those who support them obviously have both types of attitudes (although only the supporters are personified).
  • Peter's elderly neighbor is rude to him (although she blames that on him playing his music too loud).
  • Some viewers may see Peter as having both when he states that he has no faith (in religion).
  • Peter learns that after Maya's parents died when she was thirteen, she got involved in all sorts of bad things such as vandalism, petty theft and drugs.
  • Distracted by what's happening to him, Peter accidentally sideswipes a car and continues driving.
  • Maya and Peter break into John's house to look for info.
  • FRIGHTENING SCENES
  • The general and underlying possession and evil incarnate aspect of the story may also be unsettling, disturbing or suspenseful to some viewers.
  • We see a flashback to Maya's exorcism and see images of her body writhing about as a priest performs his duties.
  • Orderlies try to break down a door behind which an exorcism is being performed. Once they do, we see Father Lareaux appearing to be in shock and Maya looking quite nervous/skittish.
  • Maya thinks she hears someone in a public bathroom and then slowly goes looking into the stalls. Then, all of a sudden, what looks like raw sewage starts overflowing onto the floor and creeping through the walls. The letters "XES" then become etched into a wooden door and Maya suddenly finds Henry confronting her with a knife. As he approaches her, we see the knife drawing ever closer to her eye. Then, just like that, the vision stops.
  • Peter tries to listen to the tape of an exorcism that Maya gave him, but no matter how loud he turns it up, he can't hear anything (but his next door neighbor hears all of its creepy material).
  • A presumably comatose killer suddenly opens his eyes and stares at Maya.
  • A man approaches Peter at a reception and aims his gun at him. Peter's brother then grabs this man, they struggle and the gun goes off and it then sounds like the brother breaks the man's neck (he ends up dead).
  • Maya has a disturbing vision that includes a little girl suddenly acting demonic and dancing around stating that Jesus is dead (at the same time Maya sees a man's head vibrating so fast it's nothing but a blur).
  • A statue of Christ on the cross suddenly breaks off at the arms and then swings upside down while Peter stands before it.
  • Maya and Peter snoop around John's dimly lit house (occasionally using flashlights) looking for info. After splitting up, Maya repeatedly thinks she hears something and we occasionally see what looks like a figure or a person's point of view watching her (this goes on for several minutes). A man then approaches Maya with a knife and she initially thinks he's just a vision, but he turns out to be real. After some tense moments where Peter eventually hits the man over the head with a chair and knocks him out, weird sounds start coming from the assailant as if possessed and his body starts doing weird things (like his bones breaking/separating under his skin) but the scene ends before we really know what's happened.
  • A woman holds a gun on Maya, they then struggle and the gun goes off, killing the woman (no blood or actual impact seen).
  • A wall suddenly bends outward toward Peter from an exorcism occurring in another room. Peter then goes inside where he sees a possessed priest choking Maya, but that man eventually lets go of her.
  • Peter aims a gun at a priest who holds a knife to Maya and then ends up shooting and killing several devil supporters.
  • Maya holds a gun on Peter in a several minute sequence, prepared to shoot him if he suddenly becomes the Antichrist.
  • GUNS/WEAPONS
  • Handgun: Used to threaten and shoot (wounding and killing) people.
  • Knife: Used to threaten and wound people.
  • IMITATIVE BEHAVIOR
  • Phrases: "What the f*ck is going on?" "Get the f*ck out of here," "What the hell is that?" and "Idiots."
  • JUMP SCENES
  • A statue of Christ on the cross suddenly breaks off at the arms and then swings upside down while Peter stands before it.
  • A wall suddenly bends outward toward Peter.
  • MUSIC (SCARY/TENSE)
  • An extreme amount of suspenseful and frightening music plays during the film.
  • MUSIC (INAPPROPRIATE)
  • None.
  • PROFANITY
  • At least 2 "f" words, 2 hells and 2 uses each of "Jesus" and "Oh God" as exclamations.
  • SEX/NUDITY
  • Before his exorcism, it appears that Henry is rubbing his own clothed crotch.
  • Peter talks about a recurring dream he has where he reads a book that he's written, is satisfied with it and then discovers its title to be "XES." Claire and his brother laugh about that since it's "sex" spelled backwards and his brother jokes that it makes him feel great as well, but that he usually falls asleep afterwards.
  • SMOKING
  • Maya smokes more than five times, Peter smokes a few times, while a cop states that he has to go get some smokes and Peter's doorman also smokes.
  • TENSE FAMILY SCENES
  • We learn that Peter's parents died when he was younger and that Father James raised both him and his brother.
  • Peter learns that Maya's parents died when she was thirteen.
  • Peter confronts and must deal with various family members who've turned against him (although this is only briefly covered).
  • TOPICS TO TALK ABOUT
  • Demonic possessions and exorcisms.
  • VIOLENCE
  • A man threatens Maya with a knife in what turns out to be a vision of some sort.
  • A man approaches Peter at a reception and aims his gun at him. Peter's brother then grabs this man, they struggle and the gun goes off, and it then sounds like the brother breaks the man's neck (he ends up dead).
  • Peter learns that his elderly next-door neighbor committed suicide by hanging herself (we don't see anything of that).
  • While driving past them, Peter briefly sees a man attack another man by punching and kneeing him.
  • Peter pushes Maya backwards after she touches him while telling him he's earmarked to be the Antichrist.
  • Distracted by what's happening to him, Peter accidentally sideswipes a car and continues driving.
  • Maya breaks the glass in John's front door so that she and Peter can break in and snoop around.
  • A man approaches Maya with a knife and she cuts her finger on the tip of it while trying to see if he and it are real. He then breaks through some glass on a door to chase her and then slices Maya on the arm. Peter then knocks him out by hitting him over the head with a chair.
  • Peter trashes his room, knocking over and kicking various items.
  • A woman holds a gun on Maya, they then struggle and the gun goes off, killing the woman (no blood or actual impact seen).
  • A wall suddenly bends outward toward Peter from an exorcism occurring in another room. Peter then goes inside where he sees a possessed priest choking Maya, but that man eventually lets go of her.
  • Peter aims a gun at a priest who holds a knife to Maya.
  • Peter shoots several Devil supporters dead.
  • A person shoots another person twice, killing them and blowing out the window behind them.



  • Reviewed October 10, 2000 / Posted October 13, 2000

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