Week 2 for EW’s 2011 Summer Movie Body Count continues with Priest, starring Paul Bettany, Maggie Q, and Cam Gigandet. Click here for a reminder of our extremely precise definition for what counts as a death, and how we’re counting them. And since we’re going to be talking about deaths here, the requisite spoiler alert should almost go without saying, but we’ll say it anyhow: SPOILER ALERT!
There is no conceivable reason for a movie like Priest to be rated PG-13. The film brings together many different genres (Catholic horror, dystopian sci-fi, blood-soaked revisionist western, kung fu action, Matrix rip-off) that all have a long history of hard-R badassery. Mashing those genres together into a PG-13 film is roughly comparable to taking the twenty most vulgar death metal songs in music history and trimming them into a Kids Bop album. Except that sounds like fun, whereas Priest is terrible. However, the film does force us Body Counters to ask a semi-existential question: If a film’s primary antagonists are faceless, mindless creatures who resemble less handsome clones of the X-Files Fluke Man, should their deaths be counted in the eternal Summer Death Ledger? By which I mean: Do totally disgusting vampires have a soul? READ FULL STORY