Immaculate Review

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Rating: 2/5

Synopsis:

Sydney Sweeney goes all in on the horror genre! How does it turn out? She plays Cecilia, a devout nun who takes a position at a convent in Italy. She is met with a strange hostility, realizing her new journey may include trouble. But when she is informed of an immaculate pregnancy, she realizes the convent may have sinister secrets…intended specifically for her.

Positives:

The best thing I can say about “Immaculate” is that the setting and production design are top notch. As a viewer, I felt the authenticity of the location as we are transported to a remote Italian village. This adds to the helplessness Cecilia feels throughout the film while building the dread she begins to notice in this covent. I enjoyed seeing events unfold at the pace they did. Nothing feels rushed but the story wastes no time kickstarting the terror. The film moves at a nice pace and makes sure audiences get a finale worth their time.

The plot beats in the film might feel familiar, but anything that resembles the story of Rosemary’s Baby is sure to capture viewer’s attention. The disturbing nature of a child being conceived with a dark intent is disturbing on many levels. This feels like a modern adaption that uses some of the most unsettling aspects of that classic story. I’m glad it’s not a direct copy and takes some liberties that help distinguish the film as its own.

Negatives:

I’d heard this movie was a divisive watch and that a controversial ending will make or break the experience for audiences. Unfortunately, “Immaculate” didnt come together for me at all. I just didn’t buy Sydney Sweeney in this role. I admire her efforts to produce the film and take a chance on such a gutsy film, but I don’t think she was the strongest actress to take such a part. She comes across as bland, making me wonder if an actress who had a range capable of conveying such a horrible circumstance would have been better for the part. This is a story that demands a strong performance which is able to convey the progression of evil cornering her at every turn. I just didn’t feel like the story rose to the occasion, instead choosing to go down standard B-movie tropes. 

The hype surrounding the controversies in the film also felt underwhelming. Many were saying that there are offensive moments for believers and that the ending would leave jaws on the floor. Honestly, neither quite live up to that. We’ve seen members of the church killed by religious symbols before and sections of the church falling into corruption. I’m not sure why this one feels different to some. While the ending is certainly disturbing, it didn’t change my opinion on the film much. Sure it’s gross and cements the transition of Cecilia’s persona, but it didn’t live up to the conversation surrounding it. On that note, Cecilia’s change of perspective by the end of the film felt very rushed, frustrating the great pacing and intrigue built up for most of the film.

Conclusion:

“Immaculate” unfortunately squanders its creepy premise for generic B-movie scares and is let down by a dull lead performance. The setting and attention to detail in the film are noteworthy, but everything else is forgettable. If you’re intrigued with the premise, I’d say wait to stream it or skip it altogether and check out the better film: Rosemary’s Baby.