Starring Martin Donovan, Edward Furlong, Kelly Lynch and Randy Travis
Directed By: Robby Henson
Studio: 20th Century Fox
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Do you believe in Jesus? What would you do if a prophet appeared claiming to be Jesus Christ and asked you to follow him? Miracles are happening in a small town named Antioch and three mysterious figures have appeared and claim, “he is coming”.
The Visitation was a classic “Good vs. Evil” religious movie. I was reminded a lot of the Stand and the Exorcist at times with a bit of Jeepers Creepers sprinkled in at times. As mentioned before the plot follows and ex-minister who lives alone on his farm and takes place three years after his wife was murdered by what is believed to be a satanic cult. With no suspect or a single lead in the case, Travis Jordan loses faith in his religion and in humanity in whole. That is until a series of supernatural occurrences turn the town of Antioch upside down. With these occurrences being dubbed as “miracles”, the entire town seeks answers and, with the appearance of a young man names Brandon Nichols who can seemingly heal illness and disabilities with just the touch of his hand, the townspeople of Antioch believe that they are front and center for the second coming of Christ. Or is it someone else?
My first impression of The Visitation after the first half hour or so was that the movie was much like “Signs”. A preacher named Travis Jordan tragically lost his wife and his faith was soon to follow. He later abandons his church and lives in seclusion until something stirs his faith again. In all honesty, that’s where the similarities end. I didn’t expect much from this The Visitation, but overall, I was impressed. I was expecting a cheesy B Movie more along the lines of something such as the Scarecrow, but the directing was good, the casting was great, and the story, which was based on a novel by Frank Peretti, made sense, was easy to follow, and was believable not too ridiculous. The Visitation was a pretty good watch. From start to finish it was fairly practical and believable. One of the most interesting parts in the movie was the portrayal of the church-going citizens when they begin to believe that Brandon Nichols is in fact Jesus Christ. They go from your everyday Christian type to flat out religious fanatics who attend church in a tent located in a field out on some farm. The townspeople pretty much abandon all reason and become oblivious to the laws of society and their own religions.
I thought that the cast of mostly unknowns was very strong and is probably what made the movie. Martin Donovan, who played Travis Jordan was a borderline manic depressant throughout most of the movie but his open mind, logical thinking and ultimately his faith kept him from being charmed by Kid Jesus. Edward Furlong was right on for the main antagonist with his subtle charm with just the touch of a psychopath to even things out. And last but not least, Randy Travis always seems to be a strong presence in just about every movie that he’s in for some reason. It was good to see a familiar face.
Overall, I enjoyed this movie even though the faith part was a little rich for me, but it wasn’t to the point of sickening like some “faith” movies. There was definitely more of a psychological horror movie feel to it than I would have thought which boosted it up on the rating meter. You kind of knew what was coming as the movie progressed and I was expecting a complete plot twist much like in “Signs”, but the direction stayed true and was satisfying. For the people of Antioch, they had better hope and pray that they don’t get another visitation from a mysterious healer and his trench coat-wearing cronies. If they do encounter another prophet, a word of advice: MOVE!!!
End Of The Spear trailer
5.1 Dolby Surround
Anamorphic Widescreen (1.78:1) and Full Screen (1.33:1)
Favorite Scenes: The first sermon given by Brandon Nichols, the resurrection of the dog (dogs shouldnt die in movies) and the truth about Brandon finally being revealed.
Running Time: 103 minutes