The second installment of John Carpenter’s Apocalypse Trilogy, sandwiched between The Thing and In the Mouth of Madness.
A dying priest leaves behind a mysterious key. A colleague of the priest, Father Loomis (a nod to Halloween), played by the always wonderful Donald Plesance, comes into possession of the key. He discovers that the key unlocks the basement of an abandoned church in downtown Los Angeles. Found within the dank basement is an ancient canister with a strange green swirling liquid inside. Father Loomis suspects that the canister has strong connection to a great and powerful evil. He contacts a friend Prof. Howard Birack try and scientifically prove the evil within the canister. Prof. Birack assembles a research team and goes to the church to investigate the canister and the secret sect of priests who had hidden it for centuries. They soon discover that the liquid is the sentient essence of Satan himself and is int he process of bringing forth his father, the Anti-god. One by one the researchers are possessed until only a scant few stand in the way of the destruction of all mankind.
The film plays around with a lot of religious and scientific theories that attempt to explain the origins of good and evil and how man plays into it and whether or not man even maters in the equation. A well done and really creepy movie that leaves the viewer with a lot of questions afterwards
On a side note, Alice Cooper makes a memorable appearance in the film as a possessed and murderous homeless man. He even recorded a song entitled “Prince of Darkness” for the soundtrack. The song can be heard coming out of Etchinson’s headphones as he is being killed by… Alice Cooper!
Check out the song below: