“The VelociPastor” is Exactly as Good as it Sounds

Movie Poster

Brendan Steere

Movie Poster

“The VelociPastor”, directed by Brendan Steere, is one of the best absurd movies to come out in the last decade. The movie follows a priest, Doug Jones, who eventually finds out he is able to transform into a velociraptor, as the name of the film suggests. Doug spends the film grappling with his faith, his relationships with his family and friends, and the were-dinosaur curse, (or blessing) that he has been left with. This is exactly as ridiculous as it sounds.

This movie was clearly made with a small budget of $36,000. The practical and visual effects are not very impressive. The camera work is shaky at times. It’s clear the set is limited to a few locations, some of which look nothing like where they’re claiming to be, and the plot is absolutely absurd. And this movie is completely aware of all these things.

The writing of this film is crazy, and it’s made clear only minutes in that they are not taking themselves seriously, and neither should you. There are genuinely impressive acting performances given by characters in this film that makes you forget for a moment what on Earth you’re watching, and the writing feels very reminiscent of movies like “Robin Hood: Men In Tights” in terms of its absurdity.

There was a plot twist that completely retconned other parts of the movie about three quarters of the way in, and it didn’t even matter because it was so funny that I was willing to just go with it. There are multiple scenes that, when watching, I had to pause and rewatch because I was laughing so hard I had missed the next line of dialogue. This film has a rare type of absurdist comedy that you typically can only find in movies that are trying so hard but are so bad they’re good, but “The VelociPastor” isn’t trying to be good, so it just manages to achieve this comedy earnestly.

If you’re looking for a high quality well shot movie, this is not the one for you. You’re not going to get the smartest humor in the world, or commentary on social issues that will blow your mind. You will get a priest were-dinosaur. It is very aware of what type of movie it is, and that self awareness carries it from just a bad movie, to a great bad movie. So to put it simply, if the name “The VelociPastor” didn’t sell you on this movie from the start, it probably isn’t for you. But if you read that and thought “What on Earth is this movie—I have to watch it”, then you’re in for a treat.