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Movies & TV

31st May 2024

Disney+ has just added one of 2024’s most-anticipated movies

Stephen Porzio

It is the latest entry in a long-running franchise.

The First Omen, the sixth entry in The Omen horror movie franchise and a prequel to the classic 1976 original, has just been added to Disney+.

Co-written and directed by Arkasha Stevenson (Brand New Cherry Flavor, Channel Zero), the film sees rising star Nell Tiger Free (Servant) play Margaret, a young American woman sent to Rome to begin a life of service to the church.

In the Italian capital, however, she encounters “a darkness that causes her to question her own faith and uncovers a terrifying conspiracy that hopes to bring about the birth of evil incarnate”.

Also featuring amongst its cast Bill Nighy (Love Actually), Charles Dance (Game of Thrones), Ralph Ineson (The Witch) and Sônia Braga (Kiss of the Spider Woman), The First Omen made the list of JOE’s most-anticipated movies for 2024 that we published at the start of the year.

And we were right to be excited for it because it landed in Irish cinemas just last month to very enthusiastic reviews.

Holding an 81% score on Rotten Tomatoes, the general critical consensus is that the prequel is the best entry in the classic horror franchise in a long time.

Earning praise for Stevenson’s stylish direction, the film’s thrilling set-pieces and its timely themes, you can read a sample of some of the glowing write-ups for The First Omen right here:

AV Club: “Forget what you think you know about horror prequels. The First Omen gets it, goes for the throat, and never lets go.”

Bloody Disgusting: “Arkasha Stevenson doesn’t just helm a prequel worthy of Richard Donner’s classic but establishes herself as a bold new voice in horror.”

Chicago Reader: “This is a heartfelt, angry film whose exploitation genre beats can’t conceal a core of real hurt, betrayal, accusation, and maybe even—in the suggestion of sisterhood and resistance—hope.”

Chicago Sun-Times: “Directed with an intense, fever-dream style by Akasha Stevenson, featuring an electric performance by Nell Tiger Free and stellar work from a supporting cast led by Sônia Braga and Bill Nighy.”

IndieWire: “The rare prequel (sequel, requel, what have you) that fits seamlessly inside the existing franchise and makes tracks toward a chilling new future. In short, it births something new and genuinely scary. Remember when that wasn’t so rare?”

The First Omen is streaming on Disney+ in Ireland and the UK right now. It is also available to watch on Hulu in the US.

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