I first heard about FINAL PRAYER (aka The Borderlands) a couple of months ago while perusing the Internet for horror lists; yes, I’m one of those geeky folks who like to hear what others think, and Best/Worst Lists are a great place to hear about obscure film titles. The particular list this film occupied was 10 Goriest Film Scenes Ever (click here to read the list for yourself, however be warned: major spoilers here). FINAL PRAYER made it to #9 because of its ending scenes, which DO make your cringe…although I’m not sure I would classify them as part of the 10 Goriest Film Scenes Ever. Still, they pack a punch, and when combined with the rest of the film, they offer a chilling end to a creepy and haunting movie.
If you are not familiar with FINAL PRAYER, here is the plot synopsis courtesy of Lionsgate:
When a church in a remote area reports strange happenings, a team of Vatican investigators descends upon it to demystify the unusual sounds and events, but what they discover is more disturbing than they had first imagined.
I know the found footage sub-genre of horror is saturated with titles, both good and bad. But this film definitely deserves to be on the Good list. Granted, it’s not perfect, but it’s close.
FINAL PRAYER is shot fairly well for a found footage film and looks good overall. I particularly like the church location. This foreboding structure exudes an air of menace at first sight, and it is the perfect place for unholy events to unfold.
The acting is pretty good, with Gordon Kennedy and Robin Hill portraying the main characters. Both give decent performances, however I cannot say they are outstanding. Hill’s character (Gray) is a little over the top, while Kennedy’s Deacon is almost too stoic to be believable. Still, they are both passable as damaged characters who experience a terrifying situation.
The storyline in FINAL PRAYER is intense and horrifying. After a bit of a slow start, the movie picks up about halfway in and takes the viewer on a heck of trip into terror. The resulting climax is satisfying for the most part, however I will say it is a bit rushed. The viewer also has to read into previous implications to completely grasp what is happening. I sorta knew what was going on because of the list I mentioned earlier, however I can see where confusion might creep in for someone not paying attention.
I really enjoyed FINAL PRAYER, though, and I recommend it to anyone looking for a decent found footage flick. The film is available now in a variety of media forms if you decide to give it a look.