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“Bless Me Father For I Have Sinned”: Movie Review Of ‘Immaculate’

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at U Conn chapter.

Warning: This review contains spoilers!

As a warning, this movie review is a lot different than the first movie review I did a while ago on Anyone But You. The movie Immaculate, rather than a fun light-hearted rom-com, is a horror film set in an Italian convent filled with elderly sick women and nuns (what could go wrong?). However, both movies feature Sydney Sweeney, who I love, and horror is my favorite movie genre. So I braved it out and watched the film late on a Sunday night in my dorm room off a sketchy site that kept cutting in and out (which made the jumpscares all the more scary). Here’s my movie review of Immaculate starring Sydney Sweeney and Álvaro Morte and directed by Michael Mohan. 

Released on March 22, 2024, Immaculate follows a young woman named Cecilia (played by Sydney Sweeney) who has decided to devote her life to God and moved from the United States to Italy to live in a convent where nuns act as caregivers for elderly women. At first, Cecilia is nervous but excited about her new experience living in the convent and becomes close with a sister named Gwen as well as Father Sal Tedeschi (played by Álvaro Morte) who was the one to invite Cecilia to be a part of the convent in the first place.

Things seem normal at first and Cecilia begins to adjust to her new life, but she begins to notice strange things. Everything takes a turn when Cecilia is found to be pregnant. Having never gone through the process that could result in pregnancy, Cecilia is deemed the modern-day Virgin Mary and the entire convent begins worshiping her thinking she will deliver the reincarnation of Christ and save them all. Naturally, Cecilia is confused by all of this and, in the backdrop of other strange happenings, tries to leave and get outside help. She soon learns that no one can leave the convent, and she has to embark on a bloody and sinister journey of escape, all while carrying a ‘miracle.’

Just as I said in my other Sydney Sweeney movie about how there are thousands of rom-coms out there, there are also thousands of horror movies out there and although there’s more variation in horror movies than rom-coms, many elements are similar among films from the horror genre (jumpscares, plot twists). However, I thought two elements made this film stand out amongst other horror movies. For one thing, the plot took on religion but without the supernatural element. Many horror movies use religion as a scare tactic, but often they also incorporate supernatural elements (movies in The Conjuring series for example). However, Immaculate incorporated very few natural elements and exemplified how people can do horrible things (sometimes in the name of religion, unfortunately) rather than the idea that horrible things can only be carried out by ghosts, demons, and the Devil. Secondly, I haven’t seen many horror movies that incorporate pregnancy (and especially pregnancy that involves an unworldly Father). This element was new and interesting and also set up the plot to reveal a major plot twist which was creepy (and just a little weird).

Okay, now on to the actual review of Immaculate. Although I loved the movie, I do have to say that the first forty-five minutes of the film were a little slow and I did find myself bored at parts. But once the plot picked up and the plot twist was unraveled, it got a lot better. And it’s understandable why the first half of the movie was slow given that Cecilia was adjusting to life in a convent with only a few strange happenings (and I can’t imagine that life in a convent is super fast-paced anyway). The beginning might be a bit slow, but the crazy last half of the movie is worth the wait.

The best component of the film was definitely the acting, especially from Sydney Sweeney because she was the character who developed the most (and none of the other characters showed much development since Sweeney was the only main character) and went from a reserved devout shy girl in the beginning to a exhausted but crazed and strong character in the end. Her confusion, fear, and exhaustion seemed so real in the first half of the film as did her vengeance and anger at the end. The last five minutes of the film are the most intense and is all thanks to Sweeney and her acting. Also, I want to warn everyone who might watch because the last five minutes of the film are very intense and disturbing so just get ready to close your laptop or turn off the TV after the movie in a state of shock. Besides Sweeney, the acting of various other characters was great, especially from Father Sal Tedesch. I was so convinced of his kindness at the beginning of the film but was utterly mortified by him by the end and this transition was because of Morte’s acting (as well as all the horrible actions Father did).

Additionally, Immaculate has a good soundtrack as there is no modern music (which makes sense given the plot) but only religious hymns and gospels often sung by the nuns in the convent. This music, although pretty in most non-film settings, adds to the creepy element of the movie with the mystery behind the convent’s intentions (and if the nuns are truly good people). I also give props to the setting because the huge building with columns and empty corridors, the dark and shadowy chapels, and the surrounding Italian landscape make the audience feel as isolated as Cecilia. 

Overall, Immaculate is definitely worth a watch, especially if you love horror. Plus, who doesn’t love Sydney Sweeney’s acting (especially when she’s covered in blood)?

Abby Baier

U Conn '27

My name is Abby Baier and I'm a freshman at UCONN!