Exorcist, The [Director's Cut]

MPAA Rating: R

Entertainment: +2

Content: -2 1/2

Eleven minutes, cut from the original 1973 release, are restored in this more screenwriters cut than directors cut. Screenwriter William Peter Blatty won an Oscar for this classic tale of demon possession among the brownstones of a Washington D.C. suburb. Regan MacNeil (Linda Blair) begins behaving strangely, prompting her mother, Chris (Ellen Burstyn) to seek, first medical help then psychiatric help. As Regans activities become more bizarre, even the doctors suggest demon possession. Chris asks help from Father Damien Karras (Jason Miller), a Jesuit priest and psychiatrist, who admits exorcism isnt practiced much currently. His supervisors advise using an older priest who has experience with exorcism and call upon archeologist/priest, Father Merrin (Max von Sydow). But the demon attacks both priests with sins from their past and the struggle becomes personal for Father Karras. Comic parodies and dated fashions detract some from the impact of this scary films original release.

One of the first films to treat demon possession as a present day reality, THE EXORCIST is classic horror drama. Chris, an actress, holds parties at her house which feature excessive alcohol use. When her director calls the Austrian butler a Nazi, a brief scuffle starts. More graphic violence includes gory medical procedures, cuts appearing on Regans body, and a man thrown through a window to his death. One bloody scene shows Regan violently stabbing her crotch with a crucifix, then forcing her mothers head down for a sexually suggestive act. The demon spews green vomit along with obscenities, while Chris frequently uses profanity. But the priests, the Catholic rituals of communion and exorcism are treated with respect. The exorcism rite uses Bible scripture and reverent use of the names of Jesus, God and the Holy Spirit. While containing too many objectionable elements for recommended viewing, THE EXORCIST definitely encourages religious discussion.

Preview Reviewer: Paul Bicking
Warner Bros., 4000 Warner Blvd., Burbank, CA 91521

The following categories contain objective listings of film content which contribute to the subjective numeric Content ratings posted to the left and on the Home page.

Crude Language: Many (12) times - Mild 4, moderate 8

Obscene Language: Many (21) times - F-word 14, s-word 3, other 4

Profanity: Many (25) times - Regular 19 (GD 5, J 2, JC 3, C 2, G, Csake 3, Gsake 3); exclamatory 6 (OMG 2, MG 2, OG, Thank G)

Violence: Many times - Moderate and severe (dogs fighting, graphic medical procedures, men struggle, bed shakes violently, slaps, graphic skin/face injuries, mans crotch grabbed, girl seen stabbing self in bloody crotch, girls head turns around to back, demon/girl screams about holy water burning, man hit, jumps/thrown through window, fall down stairs, bloody body)

Sex: None

Nudity: None; Near nudity Few times (woman in nightgown, child in nightgown)

Sexual Dialogue/Gesture: Few times (man complains about pubic hair in drink, demon possessed girl pulls mothers head toward crotch)

Drugs: Several times - Cigarettes, alcohol drinking, drunken behavior, reference to psychiatric drugs/ marijuana smoking

Other: Demonic possession portrayed as realistic event, girl uses Ouija board, Catholic church and priest treated respectfully, church statue desecrated, girl urinates on floor, Catholic communion service, Doctors suggest demonic possession, priest says demon will mix truth with lies, man calls another Nazi, girl spews greenish vomit, exorcism rite uses Bible passages and name of Jesus reverently

Running Time: 132 minutes
Intended Audience: Adults

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