Fallen

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(1998) ★★★

Coincidentally, Mars mission leader Elias Koteas appears upfront in Fallen, too. He’s the serial killer dying with obscene defiance in a gas execution chamber. And now homicide cop Denzel Washington is being stalked by a demon’s spirit. No one believes him (who would?), least of all his colleagues. Even affable partner John Goodman can’t get to grips with a case that’s clearly not covered by the manuals. Police chief Donald Sutherland suspects that Washington is the killer – the clues are certainly stacking up that way. His one hope seems to be theology teacher Embeth Davidtz, whose cop father died 30 years before in mysterious circumstances. After a run-in with fallen angel Azazel, it turns out. Topped and tailed by two vintage Rolling Stones songs – Time is On My Side and Sympathy for the Devil – this sleek metaphysical thriller from Reversal of Fortune writer Nicholas Kazan is handsomely filmed in a dark and brooding style. It’s intriguing and moderately suspenseful but lacks the dynamic emotional punch of the superficially similar Se7en. Those Stones songs really resonate though.

Certificate: 15
Duration: 124min