Fallen is a 1998 supernatural thriller film, directed by Gregory Hoblit, and starring Denzel Washington, John Goodman, Donald Sutherland and Embeth Davidtz.
Police detective John Hobbes, played by Denzel Washington, gains notoriety for capturing wily serial killer Edgar Reese. Immediately after Reese is executed, Hobbes is plunged into the case of a killer who seems to be copycatting Reese. The "serial killer" Hobbes is hunting is really the demon Azazel, who can possess humans simply by touching them. For example, Azazel taunts Hobbes by rapidly body-hopping between many people in crowded city streets, making it impossible to track its movements. Azazel can even possess animals, such as when it possesses a bird to spy on Hobbes through his window. Azazel could not possess Hobbes the first time he tried, and this coupled with Hobbes' investigation of the "serial killer" makes Azazel obsessed with tormenting Hobbes. This culminates in Azazel possessing Hobbes' mentally disabled brother and making him commit suicide.
Due to Azazel's ability to switch bodies, the villain is performed by a different actor in almost every scene, or sometimes by many actors in the same scene. Azazel has several personality quirks which become apparent in each new host he inhabits. The Rolling Stones lyric "Time Is on My Side" is used as an ominous theme repeatedly sung by Azazel. Azazel is left-handed, even when possessing a right-handed host. He is also very fond of Kellogg's Corn Flakes. Azazel can also speak many human languages, for example ranting in Aramaic while in a host that has no knowledge of the language.
Hobbes tries to shoot Azazel while he is in a host, only for Azazel to reveal that killing his host does not affect his spirit, and he can simply switch to another host in the area, without direct contact. Hobbes' killing of one of Azazel's hosts results in Azazel framing Hobbes for murder, aided by the fact that he can take over the body of witnesses to make claims that Hobbes went on a shooting spree. From a hint Azazel taunts him with, Hobbes discovers that a previous police officer tried to stop another "serial killer" Azazel was possessing decades ago, but this culminated in his suicide. Hobbes contacts the dead police officer's daughter, who has become a theologian, to try to find a way to understand and defeat Azazel. By consulting several ancient texts for mention of Azazel, they discover that the no-contact body-hop Azazel performs when his host body dies has a finite range, a distance of about a sixth of a mile.
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Official Site: Paramount Pictures
Links: Wikipedia CineText Film Review - Fallen imdb.com