One can guess, fairly or not, why there’s some huge gap between a film’s production and its release, but in the case of There Are No Saints—which assembled its creative team, let’s see, nine-and-a-half years ago and finished shooting in May 2013—we can extend one shred of doubt vis-a-vis the screenwriting credit tagged to Paul Schrader. Many years ago he’d written it as The Jesuit with intent to direct, of all people, Oscar Isaac, but financial difficulties held the project and directorial duties were eventually taken up by Alfonso Pineda Ulloa, with José María Yazpik (Narcos) slotted to star. Per IMDb Pro, production began in late 2012. Then?
It’s hard to ascertain what held Saints so catastrophically long. If nothing else Schrader saw a rough cut early into Obama’s second term and spoke well of it, saying “I LOVED IT! It’s better than it would have been if I’d directed it. It’s a badass exploitation film with a black soul and shoot-from-the-hip style.” Now Saban Films are giving Saints a streaming and theatrical release on May 27, ahead of which is a trailer suggesting Schrader’s exploitation tag—what he recently called “a return to my Rolling Thunder origins”—was right on the money, for better or worse. If we say it looks much more Dying of the Light than Dark, let’s just hope more studio interference isn’t part of the bargain.
Watch the preview below for the film also starring Brian Cox, Tim Roth, Ron Perlman, Paz Vega, and Shannyn Sossamon: