SINNERS & SAINTS

3 Stars
Year Released: 2004
MPAA Rating: Unrated
Running Time: 87 minutes
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When reviewing a film, any film, you have to ask one simple question:
“Did it accomplish what it set out to do?” “Sinners & Saints” isn’t trying to be anything else but a very cheap time waster and not only does it succeed, but also manages to be a bit more. It’s that “bit more” that makes it interesting.

Father Charmichael Drake and Sister Jordan Merrick are members of the
Religious Enforcement Division, a secret branch of the Christian church that battles evil with Kung Fu. We open the film as the leather bound nun and padre embark on a chase. It seems that some Satan worshipping kidnappers (policemen no less) have taken an innocent schoolgirl hostage and are planning to sacrifice her. Using a tracking beacon connected to the Vatican GPS satellite our duo finds the baddies and proceed to teach them a little scripture, old school style! During the ensuing battle, showcasing some pretty damn convincing martial arts, the school girl hostage turns into a demon and mysteriously aids our fellow holy ass-kickers. By the time the battle ends, the demon has disappeared back to the netherworld, leaving our pair wondering what the hell that was all about.

Soon the father is receiving visions of the Queen of Hell herself,
Necrotia, who was the “hostage” earlier on. She asks him to join her side. It seems that Hell is on the verge of a revolution by rogue demons that are using the blood of sacrifices to gain power. If they win, both earth and hell will suffer.

None of this would work without the filmmakers’ sense of humor. There are Batman type fades, TJ Hooker impersonations and helpful montages explaining what’s going on in a dry training video voice. I’ve seen this type of movie before (way too damn often if you ask me) and I have to admit that I was shocked that this was any good. Not only is this entertaining, but it’s actually quite clever. Usually the credo of the porn/gore is “Let’s throw some blood and tits at the screen and hope that people don’t notice that this sucks.” But this movie never degenerates completely into that.

Sure, “Sinners & Saints” has a fair share of flaws. There’s a little too much exposition at the end, the film never does shake its
porn-flick-with-a-story vibe and the low budget is evident throughout. However, these don’t detract from the overall fun and when compared to the flaws of almost every single other film in this genre they seem like minor annoyances at worst.

What I’m trying to express here isn’t so much my enjoyment of the film but my sense of astonishment that the directors managed to pull off an actual honest to god MOVIE here. Care was put into making this film and it shows. In a sea of dull by-the-numbers super duper cheapie independently released DVD productions that makes it stand out from the pack indeed.



Posted on July 18, 2004 in Reviews by
Buffer


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