Lost Souls
R
Entertainment: +2
Acceptability: -3

The end of the world, apocalyptic tribulation and identification of the antichrist are hot topics in certain Christian circles, and even secular media, as different events appear to point the way toward Biblical end times. Or it may be a renewed end-of-the-millenium interest in spiritual matters that spawned a number of recent films about the battle between mankind and Satan. In the latest stop-the-devil movie, LOST SOULS, layperson Maya Larkin (Winona Ryder) believes in the devil and that he will possess a man to become the antichrist. And after attending an exorcism, Maya discovers the possessed man wrote out the name of the man to become the antichrist in a strange, numeric code. However, when she deciphers the code and tracks down Peter Kelson (Ben Chaplin), he does not believe her. But as odd things happen to him, Peter begins to realize he is targeted to become the antichrist. Stopping the transformation, though, is another story. LOST SOULS starts with an intriguing premise, but the film never really takes off. The audience is constantly left wondering how Maya gets her information and why she believes so passionately in any of this. Ryder fans and curious viewers may fill initial release figures but, ultimately, LOST SOULS will quickly fall away.

In a movie is filled with religious imagery and activity, most notable are exorcisms performed on various characters by officials of the Roman Catholic Church. These scenes involve violent seizures by the possessed and plenty of screaming and wailing by demonic forces. The movie portrays demonic activity as evil, and characters fighting the evil recognize the inherent danger of the fight. The characters also rely on the power of God to help them overcome the powers of evil as they pray during and after the exorcisms. But starting with a quote from Deuteronomy Book 17, which is not related to the Bible's Book of Deuteronomy chapter 17, puts the religious background on questionable footing. Several other violent scenes occur, with a few people being shot, although none of the scenes are graphic. Beyond the violence, the dialogue includes two f-words along with two regular profanities. Creating further confusion for audiences, some of the religious dogma is contradictory and none of the indications of Satans possession of the antichrist come from the Bible. LOST SOULS is not the place to find answers.

Preview Reviewer: John Adair
Distributor: New Line Cinema, 888 7th Ave., 20th Flr., NY, NY 10106

Summary
Crude Language: Few (2) times Mild
Obscene Language: Few (2) times - F-word
Profanity: Few (2) times Regular (J)
Violence: Many times Mild and moderate (people shot in chest and head, people have violent seizures during exorcisms, mans neck broken, woman shoved, woman cuts finger and arm, man hit with chair, woman strangled)
Sexual Intercourse: None
Nudity: None
Homosexual Conduct: None
Sexually Suggestive Action/Dialog: Few times (brief shot of man rubbing his crotch during exorcism, man comments on sex helping him to fall asleep)
Drug Abuse: Several times (smoking, alcohol)
Other: Different people possessed by evil spirits and exorcised by Catholic priests; person characterizes people of faith as abandoning all logic to believe; man comments that the closer to evil one is, the less mystifying it becomes; a crucifix breaks to imply that Jesus cannot help a struggling man; persons baptism said not official because of the baptizers sins; none of the signs of Satans incarnation come from the Bible
Running Time: 102 minutes
Intended Audience: Adults

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