Reviews of The Exorcist (1973) and related work

The Exorcist (1973Moving picture, 122 minutes)

An accurate representation of puberty.

References here: Mother Joan of the Angels (1961), Night of the Living Dead (1968), Aliens: Nightmare Asylum (1989), Rec (2007).

fiction moving picture

Exorcist II: The Heretic (1977Moving picture, 118 minutes)

Seen in 2016.

Schlock. The exoticizing portrayal of Africa, with its terrible special effects, takes a sharp secular turn for the better.

fiction moving picture sequel

The Exorcist III (1990Moving picture, 110 minutes)

Seen in 2016.

In Blatty’s own hands the story is clearly at its most polished, and the special effects are a massive improvement over the previous sequel, but the emotional punch suffers. Given the absurdity of Christian belief, taking the premises seriously has its drawbacks, and pinning it all on a serial killer puts the whole thing rather too close to a mundane mystery with a cartoon supervillain. On the other hand, placing Dourif so near the center can never be a bad thing.

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