The Exorcist (1973)


Your mother’s in here, Karras. Would you like to leave a message? I’ll see that she gets it.

— Demon

I owned a VHS copy of The Exorcist for a time, but I have not seen the Director’s Cut of the movie until now. Seeing that this is the end of my “Creep-A-Thon”, I wanted to end on a high with this ten-time Academy award nominated movie and the #208 movie of All Time on IMDb by William Freidkin. It won for Best Adapted Screenplay for William Peter Blatty for adapting his own book. This movie still creeps me out.

It has been a long time since I have seen the movie that I don’t want was or wasn’t in the theatrical cut. In this version, Father Merrin (Max von Sydow) is on an archeological dig in Northern Iraq where he uncovers an ancient artifact that is reminiscent of the devil.

Cut to Georgetown where an actress, Chris McNeill (Ellen Busrtyn) in the middle of filming a movie for Burke Jennings (Jack MacGowran). She rents out a house with her daughter, Regan (Linda Blair). Everything seems to fine, except Mrs. MacNeil hears noises from the attic. She thinks that there are rats. When she investigates, nothing is there.

After Regan’s twelfth birthday, she starts acting weird with spacing out, the inappropriate outbursts and swearing. Chris and Regan don’t know what is going on. Chris contacts Dr. Klein (Barton Heyman) to perform a battery of tests on Regan. He concludes that she has a lesion in her temporal lobe that causes the change in behavior.

In consulting with Dr. Taney (Robert Symonds) with x-rays, they cannot find on her brain. The doctors are stumped. They have exhausts of their options medically. It could be mental. A therapist (Arthur Storch) is called to put Regan under hypnosis. During the session, a spirit that inhabits her body is brought out.

There last resort is an exorcism to drive the spirit out of her body. Father Karras (Jason Miller) wants the task to perform the exorcism, but his superiors want to have a person that had actually performed. The church enlists Father Merrin to lead the exorcism.

I can’t believe that I was bored at some parts with this movie. During the movie, I was dozing. I don’t remember the movie having these B, C and D subplots with Karras’ mother, the mystery of the death of the director, the noises in the attic, etc.

The movie is still good. This movie is so creepy that it might happen to you. Being possessed by the devil. It’s more real than a vampire, a werewolf or a zombie coming after you.

Judgment: After all this time, the movie is very effective by freaking you out.

Rating: ****


About Branden

Branden: I am just your average movie nut that reviews films. Gives his take on pop culture and Hollywood happenings. Dreams to have his own thriving website and make a living doing what he is passionate about.

Posted on November 1, 2009, in 1973, Academy Award Winner, Best Adapted Screenplay, Creep-A-Thon, Drama, Horror, Psychological, Running Feature, Suspense, Thriller, Top 250 of All Time on IMDB and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. mcarteratthemovies

    Best part of the re-edited cut? Reagan doing that creepy spider/crab walk down the stairs. Oh. Dear. GOD.

    Another part that always stuck with me: that crazy bucking bed scene. Years upon years later, if I’m in bed and can’t sleep, I flash back to that scene.

    • You forgot the best part of it, the blood coming out of her mouth.

      The scene that still creeps me out is the crucifix masturbation scene. WHOA, NELLY!

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