“The Unholy” is a well-made commercial theological horror film with tight scares. Its spooks and devils manifest themselves inside a pop version of Christianity, making it sound no more exotic than last week’s “Exorcist” ripoff or last year’s helping of the “Conjuring” franchise. However, “The Unholy” has a supernatural plot that functions in its favor. It stars Cricket Brown, an unheralded actress who plays Alice, a deaf-mute young woman who has dreams of what she believes is the Virgin Mary. Mark my words: she’s going to be big. Alice can suddenly hear and talk after absorbing Mary’s spirit, and she can also cure the ill, attracting large crowds to her small town of Banfield, Massachusetts. ‘The’ IMDB
Apart from Alice, the film’s lead character is Gerry Fenn, a defrocked journalist-turned-tabloid reporter played by Jeffrey Dean Morgan with a sleazy middle-aged panache that makes him a convincingly jaded stand-in for all of us skeptics in the crowd. Fenn has arrived in Banfield to report on a false sensational tale about cow mutilation. But he sticks around long enough to see Alice fall into a beatific trance-out in front of a spindly dead tree. He knows he’s got a scoop when she starts healing people and a kid with muscular dystrophy walks away from his wheelchair.