Pray for those horror fans who stumble upon “36 Saints,” for they are truly in an hour of need. A maladroit mash-up of gritty New York police procedural, religious-themed slasher and low-budget filmmaking satire, this confused and confusing pic delivers no thrills, chills or anything remotely surprising. Prompt banishment to movie purgatory is assured, though viewers may condemn it straight to somewhere even worse.
A gravely serious introductory voiceover lays out the convoluted plot: Every generation is protected from evil by 36 individuals who “carry the suffering of the world.” If they’re wiped out, it’s apocalypse now. An unfortunate plane crash has whittled the current number to nine, and they inexplicably all reside in Washington Heights. Two New York City cops (Franky G, Jeffrey De Serrano) are warned that an age-old demon is on a killing spree, but their lackluster detective work does little to stem director Eddy Duran’s slapdash pileup of strangely coy kill scenes (each mimicking the demise of the victim’s namesake saint). For whatever reason, obligatory final girl Eve (Britne Oldford) is an aspiring actress trapped in a terrible indie horror movie. Whether that’s meta or moronic isn’t really worth the debate.