Keywords: Fundamentalist Church of Latter-Day Saints, Warren Jeffs, abuse, religion, extremism, polygamy, Prophet's Prey, Amy Berg.
"Prophet's Prey" is a revealing documentary directed by Amy Berg and released in 2015. The film confronts the dark underbelly of the Fundamentalist Church of Latter Day Saints (FLDS), focusing on Warren Jeffs, its self-proclaimed prophet. In an era of growing awareness about religious extremism and abuse, Prophet's Prey offers a stark look into a world that is usually hidden from public scrutiny.
The documentary follows the rise of Warren Jeffs, who took over the FLDS, a religion notorious for practicing polygamous and underage marriages. As Jeffs consolidates his power, he institutes more extreme interpretations of the Church's teachings, leading to widespread abuse and manipulation.
More Film Analysis
"Prophet's Prey" employs an investigative approach, using interviews, court records, and firsthand accounts to unveil the inner workings of the FLDS under Jeffs. The film does an excellent job of presenting a well-researched and in-depth exploration of its subject matter.
Historical and Factual Context
The FLDS branched off from the mainstream Church of Latter-Day Saints over disagreements about polygamy. They have often been in legal trouble over their practices. Warren Jeffs himself was eventually arrested and convicted of child sexual assault in 2011.
Key themes in the film
- Power and Abuse: The film examines how religious authority can be misused to exploit vulnerable followers.
- Isolation and Control: It explores the dynamics of a closed community and its impact on individual freedom and choice.
- The Failure of Institutions: It questions the role of law enforcement and social services in preventing such abuses.
"Prophet's Prey" offers more grim and comprehensive insight into the FLDS than other documentaries such as "Sons of Perdition" or "Banking on Heaven."
The film reveals several shocking instances of Jeffs' abuse, including his practice of 'reassigning' wives and children, and his use of 'God's will' to justify his actions.
Critics praised "Prophet's Prey" for its thorough investigation and unflinching portrayal of the FLDS.
"Prophet's Prey" is a powerful exploration of how religious extremism can lead to systemic abuse. It's a must-watch for anyone interested in understanding the dangerous intersection of power, religion, and manipulation.
More film information:
- IMDB score: 7.3/10
- Rotten Tomatoes score: 89%
- Metacritic score: 74/100
- Sundance Film Festival: Nominated for Grand Jury Prize.
- Warren Jeffs: The self-proclaimed prophet of the FLDS who was convicted of child sexual assault.
- Amy Berg: Award-winning filmmaker known for her investigative documentaries.
- FLDS compounds in Utah and Texas.
Key Questions Raised by the Film
- How can institutionalized abuse be prevented in isolated communities?
- What role should law enforcement and social services play in such cases?
I wonder what the film would be in another art form
- A famous book, which one would it be? "Under the Banner of Heaven" by Jon Krakauer, as both explore religious extremism and its consequences.
- A famous song? "Every Breath You Take" by The Police, as it symbolizes the constant surveillance and control experienced by the FLDS members.
- A famous piece of art? "The Scream" by Edvard Munch, representing the silent cry for help from the victims of abuse.
- A famous celebrity? Angelina Jolie, for her advocacy against sexual violence and her work with the UN.
- A color? Grey, symbolizing the bleak and oppressive atmosphere within the FLDS.
- A music style? Classical, as the FLDS is deeply traditional and resistant to change.