Do you believe that this sequel is good? It’s going to take some strong faith on your part.
The Exorcist: Believer is a direct sequel to the original 1973 The Exorcist. In this film, we get not one, but two, that’s right two possessions for the price of one. When two teenage girls go out into the woods to perform a séance, they disappear and reappear days later acting… strange. Their parents struggle to find out why the reason th… It’s possession, they are possessed. The father of one of the girls played by Leslie Odom Jr. must recruit an Oceans 11 type ragtag group of exorcists and Chris MacNeil reprised by Ellen Burstyn, who I can only assume had an important boat she wanted to buy.
Review of Exorcist: Believer
NBCUniversal shelled out 400 million on the rights to The Exorcist IP and entrusted David Gordon Green to work his soft reboot magic that he showed with the Halloween franchise. They’ve committed to producing two more of these exorcist films, and after watching this one… I’m not a believer.
Much like most of the previous sequel and prequels in the franchise, this film fails to recapture the humanity, darkness, and complexity of the original. You could point to the fact that they keep giving these movies to mediocre or hack directors, but even John Boorman fucked up The Exorcist 2, and he directed Deliverance.
Also, since The Exorcist was released, it seems like there is rarely a year that goes by that there isn’t an exorcism themed horror movie in theaters. It’s a tired horror trope at this point.
As a result, The Exorcist: Believer comes off as another generic possession movie going through the motions while skipping all the “boring” parts like relationships, character development, or mystery.
A lot of eyes have rolled over some of the messaging in this movie about being woke. Ellen Burstyn’s line about not being part of the damn patriarchy and being excluded from the original exorcism comes off as heavy handed and completely detached from the story of the original film. I think Chris MacNeil’s character is the greatest casualty of this film.
However, I think the root problem is that in trying to make Exorcism more inclusive and exploring the universality of evil, it comes off as wishy washy and noncommittal.