Tuesday, October 26, 2010

The Exorcist III

15 years after the original Exorcist, Lt. Kinderman investigates a series of grisly murders. What he finds is a bizarre connection between a deceased madman known as the Gemini Killer, and the exorcism of Regan MacNeil.

Directed by William Peter Blatty, author of The Exorcist novel, The Exorcist III is most assuredly not for all tastes. It is garish, absurd, go-for-broke, and will probably strike many who watch it as unintentionally funny. Each shot is like a masterpiece of gauche "look at me!" storytelling, the kind of movie where the light coming through a hospital window will be in two giant beams that perfectly silhouette the two character having a conversation. Those of you who know me know that I don't care much for good taste. This kind of overwrought nonsense is my bread and butter.

Apparently the studio forced last minute reshoots on Blatty. I'm not sure what Blatty's original vision would have looked like, but I suspect that the pacing problems that the reshoot seem to create, and the crazy, abrupt exorcism element shoehorned into the ending actually improve the film. Like a Lucio Fulci film, the sudden shifts in tone, awkward pacing and structural unpredictability of certain scenes lend a nightmarish feeling to the final product.

Another fun thing: I live right across the water from Georgetown, and thus I exclaimed "hey, I've been there!" like every 5 minutes during the film.

Grade: B

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