Spoilers Ahead! You have been warned!
#1 Final Movie for Ben Cross
Ben Cross died on August 18, 2020, the movie “Prey for the Devil” is the final movie in his acting career.
#2 Title Change
Originally, the movie was planned to be named “The Devil’s Light”, but this was later on changed to “Prey for the Devil”.
#3 The Head Banging on Door Scene
During the first minutes of the movie, a woman can be seen banging her head repeatedly on a door. Some fans mention that this scene was a failed knockoff to a scene on Hereditary, a 2018 horror movie.
#4 Catholic Violation
Women are not permitted to perform exorcisms, but in the movie, the main character was made as an exception to that rule.
Since exorcism are only exclusive to those who attained (or can attain priesthood), women are not given the power to practice or perform the act of exorcism, since they cannot be ordained as priests.
Also and although it is not official, the nature of a woman may disqualify her from performing a correct exorcism. In one of the requirements why a priest can only be a man, a man share unique capabilities involving their aggression, level of command, and strength, these are essence which are often lacking or weak in women, and so may prove women to have lesser affinity to drive out spirits.
#5 Feminism Gone Wrong
Although it has not been officially recognized, the movie drives a very feministic theme, this is one of the many things fans had criticized about the movie. The movie itself is highly criticized and is not well-received in many communities like Reddit due to it having poor execution and another take on the boring subject of sexism.
As fans had pointed out, this movie is another flop which contains the essence of “woman going against the rules”.
#6 Airheads (Plothole)
This one was mentioned in one CBR article, despite the head of the monastery knowing that Ann (the main character) is a valued target to the devil (and demons), they didn’t do anything to safeguard her for future demonic attacks, which is a pretty dumb move for the heads of the administration to make.
#7 Forgot to Close the Door
This is another plothole mentioned on CRB. During one practice exorcism scene in the movie, when the students failed to cast out a demon, the main teacher priest went inside the room to help the students out, however, after opening the door he just waltz straight inside and didn’t even think about closing the door. This act gives us a very obvious indicator to the viewers.
#8 Cash Grab
The movie is considered garbage by many fans, later on they prove that the movie was just another cash grab targeting Halloween audience. The Tiktok marketing for the movie further solidifies this assumption.
#9 A Total Flop
Pajiba mentions that the movie had a budget of around 200 million dollars, after release on theaters, it only grossed around 45 million dollars, making the movie a significant flop.
#10 Excluded on TV Tropes
It seems like that the movie was so bad TV Tropes decided not to make a page for it.
#11 What Could Have Been?
The concept of “exorcism school” and “battling demonic possessions” could have had been turned into an amazing franchise since the theme is very scarce. This is something which fans on many different platform like Reddit and Youtube had specifically pointed out. They said that it would be amazing to see a sort of Netflix series revolving around the same concept of exorcism and a “secret exorcism society” in the movie.
#12 First One
The concept of a “female exorcist’ is very unique. Excluding the animation and comics media, this movie may have been the first to implement the idea of having a female exorcist.
#13 Almost Had To Be Left Out
According to Wikipedia, Ben Cross had filmed his part of the movie 10 days before he died of cancer.
#14 A Catholic Propaganda?
According to one Collider Article, the movie contains many elements that many people may serve as a way to spread Catholicism. This accusation however, is often true and may generally apply to most horror / films which tackles Christianity or Exorcism, so perhaps it is something that is not really meant by the directors but rather just another causal effect caused by the theme of the movie.
#15 The Only Ace
The movie is generic, utterly so that it only have one or two unique elements within it that cannot be drawn or compared to other horror exorcism movies. Those two unique elements is the female main character and the idea of an institution battling a demonic possession crisis.
#16 A Vain Take on Sexism
The Catholic Church in real life is absolute in holding the permissibility of a woman becoming an exorcist. The Church will never recognize such a thing, or else it isn’t “The Catholic Church” at all. Although this is all indirect or unofficial, the take on sexism presented by the theme of the movie is completely vain and is not a valuable point to use in an argument.
#17 A Confusing Tag
The main character in the movie is mentioned to be “God’s Chosen”, but later on the clergy describes her to be in a “deep relationship with the Devil”.
However, this is actually something that is not new, oftentimes, the favourite of God will also be the favourite of the Devil, since the higher the value of the victim, the higher the reward it gives, and so the Devil seeks them more than the common folk.
This type of trope is not new and is not exclusive to entertainment media. Believers with high affinity to God were all victimized to a greater extent by the Devil, this is something that has been recorded in the Bible and other religious sectors.
#18 Flaming Holy Cross
In the trailer of the movie, a priest is holding a small cross while trying to exorcise a demon out of a girl. There seems to be something intense going on (presumably since the demon is portrayed to be very strong) that the cross eventually starts to burn.
A burning cross can serve many symbolistic gestures, one of them is mentioned on darkdreams.org, and it states that in our dreams, when we dream of a burning cross, we are being judged heavily by something or someone.
Another interpretation would be to combine the symbolism of cross and fire. Cross may represent a “deep belief in something”, oftentimes something spiritual, and fire generally symbolizes “passion” and “intensity”. By combing these two, we get another symbolistic gesture which may mean that a “strong and intense spiritual fight” is happening.
#19 Too Exposed
The main character in the movie seems to expose too much of her hair when wearing her nun outfit, this may be something that is not faithful to the real life interpretation of nuns since in real life, nuns are actually not allowed to expose too much of their hair. However, it is important to take note that some sects may be more lenient to things like this, but in general, as a testament to their pureness and modesty, nuns should always veil out or cover their hairs.
#20 The Female Surgeon Argument
When the main character is told that women cannot perform exorcism, only men can, she then counters the statement with her argument saying that the same thing applies to surgeons and that at some point in time, there had to be one female surgeon.