The third Exorcist movie is another one of those criminally underrated horror movies (Halloween III also comes to mind) and if you ask me, rivals the first one in overall awesomeness. Sure there isn’t the crazy backstory involving all the weird going ons on set like the original but it is just as scary, but in a different way. The first one draws its horror from what is happening to Reagan and to a certain degree the affects on her mother and Father Karras. Exorcist III just gets down and dirty involving a series of satanic themed murders and mental patients.
The story is well constructed and plays out amazingly as we figure out what is going on. The tie in to the original (ignoring the second movie and rightfully so) is clever and works amazingly within the story. It’s full to the brim with awesome blasphemous imagery and if you want to talk about tone and atmosphere, more horror movies wish they could get it as right as this movie.
Not only that but the characters are so well written and offbeat it adds this weird sort of humor to the mix. George C. Scott has some of the best dialog ever written, including a great story about a fish his wife is keeping upstairs and the way he reacts to his coworkers ineptitudes. Also thrown into the mix is Brad Dourif knocking it out of the park as the Gemini Killer. Dourif will probably go down in history as the voice of Chucky (which is pretty amazing on it’s own right) but to me this performance tops that.
As far as I’m concerned the Exorcist series could only be the first and third movie and would be one hell of a two movie series. All the other ones are worth a thing compared to these two movies. Don’t listen to all the naysayers. Give this one a shot or even another chance and quit decrying it. It’s an amazing movie.