A detective and professor hunt down a murderous occultist who mutilates his victims for a nefarious purpose. the ritual killer Carves helpless innocents on two continents with law enforcement Literally on his heels. The disjointed narrative poorly connects two strange plot lines. The odd flashback scenes explain the inner sadness of the primary character but have no bearing on the actual plot. It’s the amount of unnecessary exposition and filler that inhibits the pacing for an already lean runtime. Former NFL star Vernon Davis is the only high point as a scared and ruthless antagonist.
In Rome, Italian detective Mario Lavazza (Guiseppe Zeno) and his task force find a gruesome crime scene. A young woman is tortured in a ceremony where the killer methodically chops off several body parts. Meanwhile, in Jackson, Mississippi, Detective Lucas Boyd (Cole Hauser) and his partner (Muriel Hilaire) kick down the hotel room door of a pervert holding a runaway girl. Boyd, grieving over the loss of his teenage daughter, exacts severe justice when his partner takes the girl away. At nearby Millsaps College, McCalls (Morgan Freeman), an African studies professor, lectures his students on the dark arts of tribal medicine.
Lavazza chases a suspect through the streets of Rome at night. Behemoth Randoku (Davies) runs and jumps like a gazelle. He cuts every cop who comes in his way with a special blade. Lavazza couldn’t keep up with the physical juggernaut. Randoku makes a call and arranges a meeting. He needs to go out of town. His wealthy benefactor has a destination.
a terrible discovery
Boyd is called to the river for a terrifying discovery. A girl has been found in a mutilated state. Another crime soon follows with more disturbing clues. Boyd goes to Milaps College to talk to McCall. A Google search revealed that the culprit practiced muti. Boyd, McCalls, and Lavazza must put the pieces together to find Randoku and his nefarious ultimate goal.
the ritual killer It is adequate chase scene to qualify at a track meet. Randoku wins 400 each time because the hush-hush law enforcement can’t keep up. The gallop takes place between bouts of his killing. You never see them, just the crappy aftertaste. Randoku’s constant running becomes comical. You can see why director George Gallo (bad boys) chose a former pro athlete. Randoku’s aerobic escapades look ridiculous in comparison to his acting. Davis is convincing with a scathing face and threatening tone. We don’t see enough of him as a villain.
The police work involved in the mystery is borderline ridiculous. The movie never shows you how the Italians found Randoku. Boyd basically bumps into her. Randoku, you’d think he’d be more discrete in his rogue activities, basically holds a sign for the police to identify him. The connection between Rome and Jackson’s spies is tenuous. There’s no real attempt to logically put them together in the script. You’re just supposed to accept that it happens.
African Roots and Muti
the ritual killerThe subplots lack substance. There isn’t much time spent on Boyd’s tragedy and the McCalls’ African roots. Boyd could have continued Googling to easily uncover Randoku’s Muti-inspired agenda.
the ritual killer A production of Wonderfilm Media, Black Diamond Films, Lervolino & Lady, and Bacardi Entertainment. It will have a concurrent VOD and theatrical release on March 10 from Redbox Entertainment and screen media,