June 8, 2015

VOD Review: Let Us Prey (2015)

(aka The Really Blacklist)
Release Date: May 26th.
Country: UK.
Rating: NR.
Written by: David Cairns & Fiona Watson.
Directed by: Brian O'Malley.
Starring: Liam Cunningham, Pollyanna McIntosh, Douglas Russell, Bryan Larkin and Hanna Stanbridge.

I don't know why so many people (like us) are so quick to compare movies to one another, but we just have to say that Let Us Prey felt a lot like Assault on Precinct 13 meets The Prophecy, with a serious helping of blood & gore thrown in for good measure. It also reminded us a lot of The Traveler and Storm of the Century in parts too, so maybe it's just one of those movies that borrows heavily from, or was inspired by, a bunch of other recognizable movies.

There aren't many movies in this Genre (or in general) that don't find inspiration in others that have come before them, so it's really all a moot point as long as they're good. Which this one was.

A mysterious stranger comes out of the crashing sea, and accompanied by a murder of crows, he walks into the lives of a small group of Coppers and criminals, on a mission to steal their souls. Since all of their souls are evil and black, we're rooting for the dark stranger from the get-go. Hell is coming, and he's coming with it! Should be exciting.

PC. Rachel Heggie is a rookie Cop who is about to start her first (and maybe last) night on the job. She comes from a troubled past, and now she's just looking to stay strong and protect others from the kind of Hell that she endured as a child. Straight off, she witnesses a local punk running over a man standing in the road, and arrests him even though the man disappears. It kind of makes her look like a fool though, because no crime without a body, right?

The jailhouse is full of creepers, and when the guy who got hit eventually shows up at the station, they lock him up too, because he's too cryptic for their liking. Rachel's Sergeant and fellow Officers seem to like her about as much as they do the criminals, but at least the mysterious stranger in cell Six seems to get her. That's because he's creepy, and he knows every deep dark secret that each of them hides. He likes Rachel though, so when it comes time to expose everyone for the POS's that they are, he pretty much leaves her be. For a while, at least.

The basic gist of the movie is that everybody is a creepy fucker with nasty secrets to hide, and Liam Cunningham is here to sort them all out.

All Hell breaking loose vigorously ensues.

From the breathtaking opening sequence where we see massive, angry waves crashing against a gorgeous Scottish coastline, we knew that Let Us Prey was going to be special, at least as far as its visuals were concerned. We also ended up loving the story, how surprisingly gory it got, and every second that Liam Cunningham was on-screen. 

As simple and familiar as this story is (it feels a lot like The Traveler or Storm of the Century, at least in some ways), it allows the pieces of its narrative to come together slowly, one at a time, until we're left looking at a disturbing, horrific puzzle of human depravity. The movie isn't perfect, but damn it if it wasn't entertaining as hell. For a production with a smaller budget, it definitely makes the most out of what is has.

Liam Cunningham is the heart and soul of this movie. He's got an intense menace about him that always captivates us (he plays Davos on Game of Thrones, and does so magnificently), and he plays the bad guy perfectly. For us, this movie is worth seeing for his performance alone. 

Aside from Rachel, the characters in this movie were pretty unlikable, so it was hard for us to give a shit about any of them dying... but maybe that was the point. The fact that we loathed almost all of the characters in this movie is at least a solid testament to the skill of the actors who played them.

Let Us Prey also boasts one hell of a score, which at times reminded us of 80's era John Carpenter. Using retro synth-driven scores seems to be a popular trend in Genre movies lately, and as great as it usually sounds, we're not complaining one bit.

Was Six Satan himself, or just a generic soul-collecting Demon of some sort? Some of the things that Six said and inferred made us think that he was the walking embodiment of Old Scratch... and yet there were other things that made us think the exact opposite. Then again, he could be an avenging Angel from Heaven too, although we're pretty sure that's not it.

We're probably wrong, but we're still going with our instincts and saying that he was Satan. We'd really like to know for sure either way though.

***SPOILERS*** The part towards then end where the Sergeant flips his shit and goes all Old Testament on everybody seemed like it came out of nowhere. I don't know if he realized who Six was, and then suited up accordingly to do the Lord's work or something, but it felt like something that was thrown in just to give the movie an exciting climax. In that respect it worked, but it just felt forced.

There is absolutely no shortage of blood and gore in this one: people die messy, and there are disturbing flashbacks involving rape, child abuse, and murder, all of which we get to see it all in graphic detail.

We get a few scenes of sexual content, but none of it is graphic, and there is no nudity.

People have secrets, and some of them are pretty horrible. Also, Liam Cunningham is fucking.aces.

Let Us Prey comes about as close to being a modern day Genre classic as it can be without actually being one, if that makes any sense at all. The story might be familiar, but the twisted way in which it all plays out made it enjoyable, familiar or not. It's definitely worthy of a rental, but at $9.99, you might as well just buy the Blu-ray, and call it a day.


Let Us Prey is available now on Blu-ray, DVD, and VOD.


Pollyanna McIntosh and Hanna Stanbridge are in this.


  1. That was really entertaining. There are some flaws here and there but small ones. I agree with 4 stars.
    (Although you should get your bra off when riding your partner. You will breathe easier.)

  2. Nice movie, but in the end how did they escape from the basement if Rachel broke the key in the lock, saying before that was the the only exit?how did they open the door?the fact that you don't see how they didi it , you just saw them storming out !!

    1. Ok dumbass did you not see it broken down with the battering ram?

    2. It wasn't locked with a key. She locked it by jamming a night stick through the door handle.

    3. She broke her key in the outer door to the cells, which the Sergeant used the battering ram to break down. The inner cell door was secured by her retractable steel baton. So she just removed the baton when they ran through the fire to the main area of the station.

  3. "Some of the things that Six said and inferred made us think that he was the walking embodiment of Old Scratch... "

    You didn't pay attention to Mr. Beswick. The speaker implies, the listener inferrs. ;)

    1. We paid attention, I was jsut saying that even though it's pretty clear that he is not The Devil, there were certainly hints throughout that made it seem like he could be. Could.

    2. So why don;t you give him an explanation of who he is, instead of coming off as a know it all anonymous?

  4. Six is a suggestive number and collecting souls sounds more like a devil, fallen angel or demon to me. I guess he could have been an arch angel but it seems unlikely for an angel to collect the souls of the wicked. I would think an angel would just cast them into hell. Six did, however, give Ceasar a chance to save himself. If he was the Devil then wouldn't that mean that PC. Rachel sold her soul for vengeance and power in that final seen? What did the whole "heaven and hell on earth" comment mean? The end left me wanting answers.

    1. Grim reapers collect souls for heaven and hell. They watch and know our sin. Try doing some research before commenting.

  5. Yeah Grims do that but they don't hand out judgement. ANONYMOUS.They don't give people a "chance" to redeem themselves. Why don't you do some research.

  6. http://www.thrillandkill.com/interview-with-director-brian-omalley-let-us-prey/

  7. I think 6 is supposed to be God. It is very cryptic, and obviously, that was intentionally so. But I'm pretty sure that Rachel prayed to him when she was being held as a child, and he came to her. I just don't think a small girl would pray to Satan to rescue her. I also think that the proof is in the title to the movie.