Jun 162017

The Unholy is an uneven movie with some 1980s supernatural-horror charms but in spite of some spirited, so to speak, performances, this was a rather forgettable film from the era.



The Unholy
— Vestron Video Collector’s Series —


Genre(s): Horror, Supernatural
Lionsgate | R – 102 min. – $39.97 | June 27, 2017

Date Published: 06/16/2017 | Author: The Movieman


Directed by: Camilo Vila
Writer(s): Philip Yordan and Fernando Fonseca (written by)
Cast: Ben Cross, Ned Beatty, William Russ, Jill Carroll, Hal Holbrook, Trevor Howard
Features: Commentary, Featurettes, Original Ending, Trailers/TV Spots, Galleries
Digital Copy: No
Formats Included: Blu-ray
Number of Discs: 1
Audio: English (DTS-HD MA 2.0)
Video: 1080p/Widescreen 1.85
Subtitles: English SDH
Disc Size: 36.3 GB
Codec: MPEG-4 AVC
Region(s): A


THE MOVIE — 2.5/5

Plot Synopsis: In New Orleans, a city with a dark underside of black magic and satanic worship, two priests have been brutally murdered at St. Agnes Church. Now the unholy reigns, only to be challenged by the purest of mortal souls, Father Michael (BEN CROSS), believed to be spiritually blessed following a fall from a building and surviving without injury, is appointed to the ungodly parish. Is he really the “chosen one,” strong enough to fight such ravishing temptation, such raw evil? Or is he simply the third to die?

Quick Hit Review: The Unholy was on the tedious side to sit through as the scares are few and far between and when they do occur, with some moderately impressive make-up effects, they’re hardly frightening. On the positive side, Ben Cross delivers and I’ll never be disappointed in seeing Hal Holbrook even in a small role and the effects work was rather impressive.

Otherwise there’s just wasn’t very much interesting going on with The Unholy and it felt scattershot going through what must have been numerous passes in the editing room: for instance, Ned Beatty’s detective character, investigating the priests’ murders, is in and out of the picture but has no bearing on the plot itself.

All that said, it’s perhaps worthy of viewing for fans of 1980s supernatural horror and there was probably a really good, and memorable, movie in there somewhere.



This release comes with a glossy slip cover.

Commentary/Audio Interviews:

  • Director Camil Vila
  • Composer Roger Belton
  • Co-Writer/Production Designer Fernando Fonseca with isolated selections of his unused score


  • Sins of the Father (19:09; HD) – Actor Ben Cross discusses his career and how his path of becoming an actor that brought him to Hollywood and working on The Unholy.
  • Demons of the Flesh: The Monsters of The Unholy (22:26; HD) – This covers the (troubled) effects work done on the film. Probably one of the more interesting of these featurettes as it’s far more interesting to hear about problematic productions than everyone providing the clichéd rosy outlook.
  • Prayer Offerings (18:35; HD) is an interview with Co-Writer and Production Designer Fernando Fonseca.

Original Ending (15:02; HD) – Here we get to see the ending which used many of the Make Up Effects Designer’s work that was ultimately replaced. Optional commentary with Producer Matthew Hayden available.

Also included is the Theatrical Trailer (1:17; HD), TV Spots (2:15; HD), Radio Spots (2:25; HD), Original Storyboard Gallery (18:40; HD) and a Still Gallery (11:51; HD).


VIDEO – 4.0/5

The Unholy arises from the depths of hell courtesy of Lionsgate and is presented with a 1080p high-definition transfer and shown in its original 1.85 widescreen aspect ratio. The transfer looks decent enough with sharp detail and impressive dark levels while never appearing overly crushed. There is some fine amount of natural film grain but I also noticed minor instances of dust marks, so not incredibly clean.

AUDIO – 4.0/5

The disc comes with a 2.0 DTS-HD Master Audio track which offers up clear enough dialogue while also showcasing some nice depth especially during the finale which has a wide range of audio as Father Michael fights off demons and temptations. It’s nothing I’d call fantastic, yet still notable considering the film’s age and production budget.


OVERALL – 3.0/5

Overall, The Unholy is an uneven movie with some 1980s supernatural-horror charms but in spite of some spirited, so to speak, performances, this was a rather forgettable film from the era. The Blu-ray released through Lionsgate’s “Vestron Collector’s Series” includes some decent bonus material and respectable video and audio transfers.





Check out some more screen caps by going to page 2. Please note, these do contain spoilers.

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