This movie is anti-Christian. Look at the inverted cross in the name itself. It has an agenda - it's not just a movie. Do not watch it, do not let your close ones watch it either.
There are many more other good horror flicks out there who can do it without demonising religion (and not any or all religion, it specifically targets Christians).
I think far too many movies that go for a similar vibe to _Apostle_ aren't willing to take that very important step into actually embracing your supernatural/fantasy/gothic elements. _Apostle_ on the other hand, goes full hog saying "fuck that", and in turn I'm saying "Please sir, may I have some more."
_Final rating:★★★½ - I really liked it. Would strongly recommend you give it your time._
***Mysterious first half devolves into muddled half-baked horror cheese***
A man in 1905 Wales (Dan Stevens) goes undercover as a member of a weirdo cult to save his captive sister on an isolated island.
"Apostle" (2018) has a similar plot to “The Wicker Man” (1973/2006) and a setting akin to “The Village” (2004) and “The Ritual” (2017), but it’s the least of these.
The first half is a decent set-up; a little dull, but nice and mysterious with a fantastic setting and village set. Unfortunately, the second half devolves into half-baked horror cheese with a couple of random torture scenes to supposedly keep things "exciting."
I was shocked at how bad the second half was -- bad flow, no finesse, ill-conceived, lack of consistency, too ambiguous -- just lousy wannabe-horror filmmaking. It’s like the director needed 20 more minutes to properly tell the story, but was pressured to keep the movie as close to 2 hours as he could and so clumsily forced the footage in the second half together.
Nevertheless, the movie's provocative upon reflection, particularly its commentary on human-made hybrid religions and the potential for corruption and abuse thereof. Think Jeroboam's syncretic religion when the northern kingdom of Israel broke from Judah; he concocted two golden calf idols and appointed illegitimate "priests." It was influenced by Judaism and featured some of its trappings, but left out the most important part (God).
The film runs 2 hours, 10 minutes and was shot in Wales.
GRADE: C- (First half B- / Second half D-)