Friday, November 11, 2011

Exorcist 2 (1977)

Coming off of 'The Scariest Movie of All Time,' it would seem that a sequel to THE EXORCIST would be rather straightforward -- a new demon, a new child, another exorcism -- but somewhere, somehow, things went horribly, horribly wrong. Screenwriter William Goodhart and director John Boorman instead decide take us on their own confusing journey of faith, discovery, and sacrifice.

Regan MacNeil has grown up to become a normal teenager, with no recollection of the terrible possession that befell her just four years earlier. Her psychologist is convinced that Regan is repressing the memories of the events, and that she could easily fall under the influence of the demon once again. Meanwhile, the Roman Catholic Church has sent a priest out to investigate the death of Father Merrin, which leads him to Regan. Using a hypnotic "synchronizer" that links his mind with hers, Father Lamont comes in contact with the demon Pazuzu, who takes him on a trip through time and space to meet another boy he had once possessed. Lamont seeks out Kokumo in Africa and learns that he, too, had rejected the demon, only to become the savior of his people. Now armed with the knowledge needed to save Regan's soul, Father Lamont returns to Georgetown for a final showdown with Pazuzu!

EXORCIST II really is a test of faith, but one taken by the audience. Disbelief must be suspended from the highest peak in order for anyone to accept the preposterous plot, which blends pseudo-science with religious mumbo jumbo. Richard Burton, a seven-time Oscar-nominee, is made to look like a fool as the deranged Father Lamont, who quickly becomes fascinated by the demon he looks to destroy. He often rambles like a psychotic, and makes for a terrible lead when he cannot be trusted by the audience. It is impossible to take Linda Blair seriously, either, when she is forced to go cross-eyed and act brain-dead during the ridiculous "synchronization" experiments. Thankfully, the special effects, cinematography, and incredible locations far outweigh the strength of the script, but EXORCIST II is still widely criticized as being one of the worst sequels in the genre.

Rating: 5/10.

9 comments:

  1. So I do not understand, why the people say, the film is not good. I admit that the film does not reach to the first part near, but I find "exorcist 2" is very well a successful continuation and has a well told story as well as an absorbing atmosphere. In my opinion "exorcist 2" is better around something than 3. share and all next films. I like the film and have a look at him with pleasure. I also think that one should not measure this film in his predecessor, because this is nearly impossible like with the film "Poltergeist".

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  2. I think what it comes down to is that the film is just plain silly. It asks so much from the audience in order for them to believe the events on screen. They use the harmonic synchronizer casually as if the audience will automatically agree that it is pure science when it is all pure fluff. I do really enjoy the mountainous locations of Africa, but the plot is a far stretch.

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  3. Haha glad we agree on this one Carl! :) I just watched E3 and that one is pretty f'n awesome. Its like the Die Hard series I guess... just had a horrible sophomore slump.

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  4. 3 is such a fantastic film, I should be watching it tonight or tomorrow. I watched 1 but it is a daunting task to review.

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  5. Well! the third part is really good as an independent film, however, the only one what with exorcist deals, nevertheless, is Lee J Cobb...
    Of course he is exciting, but I count him reluctantly to it. I know of course now only the German version and do not know whether becomes clear in the original in English languages version of the film more than in the German ones.

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  6. I'm seemingly one of the few people in the world that actually doesn't think a great deal of THE EXORCIST. That a sequel to it didn't fulfil audience expectations doesn't surprise me in the least. But this is actually a lot of fun. More fun than the original film. It is a stylistic disaster though and it has aged badly. If one thing the original did possess was a wonderful look and a tremendous atmosphere. THE EXORCIST II has neither.

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  7. I always approach the film with an open mind, but once the harmonic syncronizer enters the picture, I lose all hope. I am absolutely a fan of the original, one of the few films that terrifies me more with each viewing. Coming from an agnostic background, that still surprises me.

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  8. I'm not posting anonymously on purpose, but in this case I'm glad for it because I don't want to blow my cred just as I'm beginning to comment on this impressive site.

    EXORCIST II: THE HERETIC is my favorite genre film of its decade.

    Believe it or not, we ARE out here, and not all of us have been possessed by Pazuzu.

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  9. Glad for all the posts, and even happier they weren't just all spam when I got to my inbox this morning, lol... At least there are some fans out there to justify its existence. I'd even take The Beginning over The Heretic, although they are each just as silly in my opinion.

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