The Exorcist III (1990)


If I were to write a list of special talents, procrastinating would be no.1.

I’m just SO good at avoiding the things I should be doing – masterful in fact. If anyone wants tips feel free to ask, though I  find staring into space helps the most. I’ve been meaning to review this film for around two months now but staring into space is preferable.

Anyway, as previously explained in this post right here – The Exorcist III was written and directed by William Peter Blatty (author of The Exorcist) and it’s a lot better than you might think. It certainly deserves more praise than just being ‘the third Exorcist’.

*this review may contain some tiny, weeny spoilers but nothing major*

‘The Exorcist III’ review

Blatty wrote the screenplay based on his seventh novel Legion, which was his sequel to The Exorcist (novel). Hdownload.jpge wanted to call the movie Legion too, but the brainiacs in Hollywood thought releasing it as a threequel (after the AMAZING Exorcist II: The Heretic….) would be a better idea (hmmm). I’ve read that Blatty fought against this vehemently but you know, the fat cats call the shots. I mean, what does the silly little author-slash-director know anyway?

So the story is set fifteen years after The Exorcist and includes characters from the original story. George C. Scott stars as Lieutenant Kinderman and Ed Flanders (Hidely-ho Neighbourino) plays Father Dyer.

Apart from an initial spooky scene to set the tone, the film starts with both men, who are friends, meeting on the anniversary of Father Karras’ death (he threw himself down the steps at the end of The Exorcist). Coincidentally – OR NOT! – Kinderman is also investigating a series of grisly, satanic-esque murders that mirror ‘The Gemini’ – a deceased serial killer (whom Blatty based on the Zodiac Killer).

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George C. Scott was definitely my favourite part of the movie. Apparently he only signed up because he liked Blatty’s screenplay so much – he’d never even seen The Exorcist! But he was an excellent addition – as impressive and imposing as ever. He and Ed Flanders (Okely-dokely) were both fun to watch. I enjoyed their friendship and their “old man” conversations.

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Sadly Father Dyer is murdered early on whilst in hospital. Because elements of his death match the murders Kinderman is investigating, the rest of the film then mostly takes place in the hospital where Dyer was murdered – and it’s clear something weird and evil is going on. It’s cool because hospitals are pretty creepy anyway and it provides the perfect backdrop for some super scary – and at times surreal – scenes.

We also meet some fairly strange characters – aos-2Fabio had a cameo. Yep. And there’s The Unhelpful Nurse with Rocky Horror make-up who we don’t know whether to trust or not. Of course Hershel from The Walking Dead – he played a very strange, chain-smoking doctor. Now I’m pretty good with faces but I literally had no idea it was him at all until I did some IMDB’ing. And then I was all like……

Oh, and I know that ‘Samuel L. Jackson’ is often bandied around this film but seriously, blink and you’ll miss him.

The Exorcist III feels more strongly ‘adapted from a book’ than The Exorcist did. Maybe because it was directed by a writer or because the plot is driven by a detective story -it certainly felt more involved. It’s more character and dialogue driven – I actually had to pay attention. Come on Emma, you’re not watching Con Air or Mean Girls now…

And of course it wasn’t as scary as The Exorcist, but what is anyway? Instead of the relentless terror associated with the former it had kind of a ’90s thriller’ vibe twinned with horror and fantasy. But that’s no bad thing – I mean 90s thrillers are fucking awesome and at least I can watch it on my own.

Don’t fear there are scary, screwed up scenes (one in particular was pretty damn unforgettable) and happily it retains atmosphere and tension throughout. It just won’t keep you up at night like Ms MacNeil might have done. But it’s a very solid, highly enjoyable film that definitely didn’t deserve its crummy threequel status.

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Special shout out to Eric who I know loves this film!

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About emmakwall

Films, books, soundtracks, good humour
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57 Responses to The Exorcist III (1990)

  1. Ryan says:

    Nice! I need to revisit this one, and I agree, it’s pretty underrated as far as sequels go.

  2. drhumpp says:

    It’s nice to know that we have a similar skill set. I’m a pretty good procrastinator myself. Staring into space for an inordinate amount of time is a good skill.

    Since you’ve mastered that, try this one: I can waste hours without a problem, but when someone else asks me to do something, it’s at the precise moment when I was about to get serious. This one is difficult to pull off if you’re living alone.

    Oh, and I liked Exorcist III, too. The first one never touched the same nerve with me as it did most. I liked the story, but I was never disturbed. This one actually gave me the willies at one point.

    • emmakwall says:

      Haha! Thank you Dr Humpp 🙂 I really love your one as well and have DEFINITELY achieved that a few times in the past. It’s strange how we can go for hours without really starting anything, then the moment someone wants your help or a favour, ah….why was that the VERY second we were going to start doing what we needed to do!!!

      The Exorcist scared the shit out of me!! Though I thought after posting this, they’re totally unfair comparisons anyway. I watched The Exorcist when I was about 13 and The Exorcist III when I was 30 and a lot harder (I ALMOST sleep in pitch black now….). I can definitely agree with getting the willies (no puns intended AT ALL!), it had a strange atmosphere throughout and George C. Scott was just great!

  3. alexraphael says:

    I’d forgotten there was even a second one.

  4. Fab review Ems! I STILL haven’t gotten to this.😕
    #procrastinatorsunite
    #kindredspirits

  5. Jay says:

    I’m a procrastinator too, but that’s not why I’ve never seen this movie! 😉

  6. beetleypete says:

    It’s a good one, to be sure. Then again, I do like George C. Scott. Nice review, Em.
    As ever, Pete. XXX

    • emmakwall says:

      Thanks lovely Pete!! We agree yet again 🙂 how are you? xxx

      • beetleypete says:

        Got a bugger of summer cold/flu, and then Julie’s car rolled off the driveway on Saturday, and ended up against a neighbour’s wall! (I did a blog post about it) Other than that, fine and dandy honey! XXX

        • emmakwall says:

          Nooooo! I liked that comment but it felt wrong liking it. If you konw what I mean.

          How is Julie’s car and the neighbour’s wall? Bloody annoying to have cold/flu – boo! I’ll send get well hugs! xxx

          • beetleypete says:

            Should need a new bumper. Courtesy car arriving later today. The wall was OK, but we broke all his solar-powered border lights. He was really good about it though. XXX

  7. Aaron says:

    I’ll have to watch this one again. I don’t think I’ve seen it since it first came out, but it sounds pretty decent.

  8. theipc says:

    Yesssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssss!

    #kevin

    #clams

    Love Pen!!

  9. vinnieh says:

    I can’t believe I’ve never seen this film, stellar review sister. And Ed Flanders, that is so cool.

  10. mikeladano says:

    Holy crap. I saw this in theaters. It was not the first R movie I saw in theaters, but it was second. Very creepy…I know the scenes you are talking about.

    I used to think George C Scott was Donald Oleasants.

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