HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
Newest Reviews
First Love
Countess from Hong Kong, A
Storm Boy
Storm Boy
Frozen II
White Sheik, The
Whalebone Box, The
Hunt, The
Invisible Man, The
Honey Boy
System Crasher
Judy & Punch
Bacurau
Battling Butler
Vivarium
Seven Chances
Dogs Don't Wear Pants
Navigator, The
Knives Out
Hit!
Charlie's Angels
Passport to Shame
Le Mans '66
Keep Fit
Doctor Sleep
Friend or Foe
Brass Target
Mine and the Minotaur, The
Sky Pirates
Syncopation
Sea Children, The
Ghost of a Chance, A
Go Kart Go
Great Buster, The
Seventy Deadly Pills
Wings of Mystery
Treasure at the Mill
VFW
Crime Wave
Terminator: Dark Fate
   
 
Newest Articles
The Whalebone Box: The Andrew Kotting Interview
Being Human: The Elephant Man on 4K UHD Blu-ray
It's! Monty Python's Flying Circus Series 3 on Blu-ray
Put the Boot In: Villain on Blu-ray
The Children's Film Foundation Bumper Box Vol. 2: Vic Pratt Interview
All the Lonely People: Sunday Bloody Sunday on Blu-ray
Desperate Characters: Beat the Devil on Blu-ray
Chansons d'Amour: Alfie Darling on Blu-ray
Ozploitation Icon: Interview with Roger Ward
Godzilla Goes to Hollywood
Demy-Wave: The Essential Jacques Demy on Blu-ray
The Makings of a Winner: Play It Cool! on Blu-ray
Sony Channel's Before They Were Famous: A Galaxy of Stars
Start Worrying and Hate the Bomb: Fail-Safe on Blu-ray
Completely Different: Monty Python's Flying Circus Series 2 on Blu-ray
Bash Street Kid: Cosh Boy on Blu-ray
Seeing is Believing: Being There on Blu-ray
Top Thirty Best (and Ten Worst) Films of the 2010s by Andrew Pragasam
Top of the Tens: The Best Films of the Decade by Graeme Clark
Terrorvision: A Ghost Story for Christmas in the 1970s
Memories Are Made of This: La Jetee and Sans Soleil on Blu-ray
Step Back in Time: The Amazing Mr. Blunden on Blu-ray
Crazy Cats and Kittens: What's New Pussycat on Blu-ray
No Place Like Home Guard: Dad's Army - The Lost Episodes on Blu-ray
A Real-Life Pixie: A Tribute to Michael J. Pollard in Four Roles
   
 
  Exorcist II: The Heretic Possession Is Nine Points Of The Law
Year: 1977
Director: John Boorman
Stars: Linda Blair, Richard Burton, Louise Fletcher, Max Von Sydow, Kitty Wynn, Paul Henreid, James Earl Jones, Ned Beatty
Genre: HorrorBuy from Amazon
Rating:  6 (from 4 votes)
Review: Although disturbed by an exorcism he has recently conducted in South America, Father Lamont (Richard Burton) agrees to investigate the death of Father Merrin (Max Von Sydow), who was himself killed during the exorcism of a young girl, Regan (Linda Blair). Teenage Regan now attends a school for mentally ill or mentally disabled children, but when Lamont arrives to meet her, he realises that the demon who once possessed her is not finished with her yet...

How do you follow up one of the most successful horror movies of all time? Why, with one of the biggest disasters, of course. This painfully pretentious sequel was scripted by William Goodhart, and was greeted with such derision that it was re-edited and re-released, but the damage was done. Although a favourite of Golden Turkey fans everywhere, it's not the laugh riot you might expect, being essentially too thoughtful in its approach, in spite of its excesses, to be a camp classic.

That's not to say you can't amuse yourself by making fun of it as it struggles with its philosophical musings. Unlike the original, which effectively combined theological conflicts with sensational set pieces, Exorcist II tries to marry Christian worries about good and evil to vague renderings of traditional African religion without doing justice to either. We're ostensibly given a war between God and the Devil, taking in science versus the supernatural for good measure, but by the end of it you'll most likely be thinking, "Huh?"

The casting doesn't help. Linda Blair is too sunny in her disposition to be believable as any kind of spiritual battleground - "I was possessed by a demon," she beams, "but I'm fine now!" Richard Burton is simply a miserable presence, often staring into space or muttering portentous dialogue so that you end up feeling pretty sorry for him by the end.

However, if The Exorcist II fails, it's not through want of trying. There are some genuinely dreamlike, studio-bound flashbacks featuring Von Sydow, and William A. Fraker's washed-out cinematography can be quite striking, with some good photographic tricks and intricate model work. And they're so pleased with the insect photography the filmmakers take every opportunity to use it.

Ah yes, those locusts - heavy symbolism for rampant evil. It turns out Regan is apparently a "good locust", a kind of neutralising force for a coming plague of Satan's hordes. As far as I could work out anyway, with the distractions of an extended use of the hypnosis machine and an ill-advised tap dancing number, it's difficult to tell what it's all about.

Which version will you see? Will it be the one where Lamont lives or dies? Or the one with moody, wailing music from Ennio Morricone, or the one with his over the top disco stylings? Not knowing will add some suspense to the film, at least. Wouldn't it have been easier to build that temple at the bottom of the cliff? Followed by the rather more satisfying Exorcist III over a decade later, then two failed tries at a prequel.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 9500 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 

John Boorman  (1933 - )

British director whose work can be insufferably pretentious or completely inspired, sometimes in the space of a single film. He began his career with the BBC, before directing Dave Clark Five vehicle Catch Us If You Can. Hollywood beckoned and his Lee Marvin movies Point Blank and Hell in the Pacific won him admirers.

From then on the quality was variable: the obscure Leo the Last, the harrowing megahit Deliverance, the ridiculous Zardoz, the reviled Exorcist II, Arthurian adaptation Excalibur, The Emerald Forest, Where the Heart Is, The General and underrated spy drama The Tailor of Panama. Was once involved with an aborted attempt to film The Lord of the Rings.

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star is the best at shouting?
Arnold Schwarzenegger
Brian Blessed
Tiffany Haddish
Steve Carell
Olivia Colman
Captain Caveman
Sylvester Stallone
Gerard Butler
Samuel L. Jackson
Bipasha Basu
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Darren Jones
  Butch Elliot
Andrew Pragasam
  Rachel Franke
Enoch Sneed
Paul Smith
Paul Shrimpton
   

 

Last Updated: