- Christopher Walken as Gabriel
- Elias Koteas as Thomas Dagget
- Virginia Madsen as Katherine
- Eric Stoltz as Simon
- Viggo Mortensen as Lucifer
- Moriah Shining Dove Snyder as Mary
An ambitious fantasy that sometimes borders on being rather silly, The Prophecy is redeemed by excellent pace, imaginative direction and a very credible cast.
Thomas Dagget is a police detective who has a history with religion. Many years before, he wanted to become a priest and even wrote a study on the subject of religious history, but after seeing a viciously violent vision of heaven in turmoil he suffered a crisis of faith. So when his religious text is found at a murder scene of an unusual victim, he is called in to investigate. The belongings to the strange creature, which is in fact a dark fallen angel, include an unknown entry into the bible that speaks of a dark soul entering heaven. Thomas soon realises he has stepped into something much darker than he ever imagined and must now face the brewing war between angels that has been predicted centuries before. This won’t be easy as Gabriel has arrived on Earth, angered by God’s rejection and compassion for humans, and now wants to collect the evil soul of a recently deceased colonel. If Gabriel manages to claim the soul and take it back to heaven, then the once peaceful resting place will become overrun with the most evil force there is. Complicating matters for the vicious and very angry Gabriel is that Simon, an angel on the good side of the civil war between seraphs, has got it and placed it inside the body of Mary, a young Native American girl. The young girl soon becomes strangely ill and suffers bouts of possession as the evil spirit inside her takes control. Travelling to Mary’s home town and teaming up with Mary’s caring schoolteacher Katherine and later an unexpected ally in Lucifer, Thomas must find Mary and keep her from the claws of Gabriel as he moves in ever so quickly to his goal of bringing the evil to heaven and tipping the balance in his favour.
As writer and director, Gregory Widen fashions a strange movie in the form of The Prophecy. I must say he brings many dark possibilities to the table and mixes them with religious overtones to a very successful degree. And as hokey as some of the plot is, his assured sense of pace and knack for the unusual keeps the story ticking over nicely with some creepy touches here and there. Admittedly, some of the ideas within The Prophecy become lost in the scheme of things and some needed expansion to be fully interesting. But stylish visuals and a dark sense of humour, provided by both Gabriel and a threatened Lucifer make this exercise in religiously tinged fantasy something to watch. Horror elements abound along with the fantasy, crafting some really brutal scenes of an angelic battleground, a young girl suffering horrifying possessions and Gabriel’s methods of eliminating of those in his way. Some say The Prophecy functions as a thriller of sorts and to a certain extent that’s true, but it works best as a fantasy horror. A superb score of choral voices and marauding drums accentuates the religious overtones of this movie.
Christopher Walken is the real show stopper of the movie, playing the unusual Gabriel. Wrapping the character in a cloak of warped anger, rejected hate and an undeniably morbid sense of humour, Walken clearly is having a great time portraying the fallen seraph, desperate for revenge. It’s safe to say that Walken owns the film with his expertise in the weird and wonderful put on spellbinding show. Elias Koteas brings a gravity and sense of disbelief to this character, despite the part being written rather sketchily. The same goes for Virginia Madsen, who exudes compassion and determination as an ally in the battle against angels. Eric Stoltz is appropriately tense and desperate as Simon, the angel who is tasked with hiding away the dark soul that could reignite the brewing war. Viggo Mortensen, who may only be seen for around 10 minutes, relishes the part of Lucifer, who feels that his dominion over evil is being threatened and forms an unlikely alliance with the humans. Mortensen savours playing the delightfully corrupt character who is not going to let his hold over all things dark be challenged. Moriah Shining Dove Snyder as the young Mary, who becomes taken over by the dark soul residing in her, is actually very good, being sweet one minute and then unnerving because of the possession the next.
Overblown to be sure, but well executed and acted with capability, The Prophecy is if nothing more an interesting fantasy with heavy religious overtones.