Exorcist II

Horror, according to Oxford dictionary, is “intense shock and fear or disgust”. Have you seen The Exorcist II? It’s supposed to be a horror movie, but doesn’t really stand up to these horror standards. It’s a terrible sequel to the original movie, and has a storyboard that’s anything but clear, making it annoying as you watch the film. A better title to that movie would have been “The Confusion”.

The movie starts with a flashback scene of an exorcism performed by Father Merrin. Then we are taken to a Psychiatrist’s clinic, where the doctor treats Regan, a young girl, using a hypnosis machine. As the movie unfolds, we learn that Regan used to be possessed by a demon, and the doctor is treating her to see if she still remembers anything about the incident. Father Lamont, a holy priest, is sent on a mission to investigate Merrin’s exorcisms, so he seeks Regan. Lamont, the doctor and Regan meet in the same room and decide to try the hypnosis machine. Regan and the doctor go under hypnosis and a demon tries to take the doctor’s heart, leaving her temporarily paralyzed, but Father Lamont quickly joins her using the machine and saves her.

After that incident, Lamont and Regan use the hypnosis machine several times, during which Lamont has visions of a horde of locusts attacking an ancient African tribe, and a boy, Kokuma, who helps tame the locusts, and gets possessed. He also learns about Pazuzu, a demon responsible for all this evil.  Father Lamont goes to Africa searching for Kokuma to teach him how he survived the possession. When Lamont finally reaches Kokuma, he teaches him about the locusts. He says that locusts turn “evil” due to the rubbing of their wings together, but there are some “good” locusts that resist and turn the other locusts into “good locusts”. After that, Lamont returns to the house where Father Merrin was attempting his last exorcism, Regan also follows him. He faces the demon and it tried to take his soul, but Regan helps him resist, so he finally banishes it.

The Exorcist II: The Heretic is just a terrible sequel, and probably the worst version around. Compared to other horror movies and the original one, this one is a documentary! It lacks all the qualities that make a good horror movie, for it barely contains any “frightening” or “shocking” scenes. It completely lacks the element of surprise or shock. It is nowhere near the greatness of the original Exorcist, which is probably the scariest movie of all time. If insects disgust you, you might find the locust scenes disgusting; otherwise the movie’s special effects are less than average. The movie’s sound effects are also poor. Instead of having surprising sounds and shrieks, all it has is a lot of annoying screaming.

The story, on the other hand, is also disappointing. It is very vague, and doesn’t unfold clearly. The viewer constantly gets lost throughout the movie, and starts wondering what the hell is going on, or how do certain events relate to the rest of the story. Perhaps if one watched the original movie first, he’d understand the sequel better, but anyway, it would still be unclear.

Another weakness in the movie is the way it portrays the African tribe. Looking at the way they dressed and their appearance and actions, the image they portrayed is a mixed up combination of Muslim, Indian, and Christian cultures, and that’s not how African tribes really are. The more realistic things look in a horror movie, the better they make it.

As for the acting, you could say that it’s the best thing about the movie. Linda Blair (Regan), and Richard Burton (Father Lamont) play their roles brilliantly.

Perhaps The Exorcist II should not be classified as horror. It might be better classified as dark science fiction or drama or thriller or something… The movie is not really “scary”, but as Marilyn Manson said about the original, it is “challenging” for it deals with the ideas about evil and religion. The movie is more reminiscent of dark action type of movies, like The End of Days, for they have mysterious atmospheres, and deal with the idea of the devil and evil vs. good. I’m not an expert on movies, but I know that The Exorcist II doesn’t compare to the modern day horror movies or thrillers like Hannibal or Sleepy Hollow or even the old The Exorcist. However, if you want to, I think you can induce a meaning or message from the movie, but thanks to the bad production, you’d have to watch it twice to really identify one. So if you want to put it this way, the world, or society, contains three kinds of people: people that are truly good at heart, neutral people (the majority), and purely evil people that consist the seeds of evil. Evil is highly contagious and cancerous, and spreads over the majority. The movie symbolizes how evil spreads quickly, so it’s up to the few truly good people out there to save the others and prevent them from falling into evil’s grasp.

So if you find movies about spirits, demons, the supernatural and evil interesting, you might like The Exorcist II. But if you’re looking for a good horror movie, look elsewhere. The Exorcist II is just one of those movies that you’d watch and forget the next day.

Here’s the IMDB link of the movie:

You can buy the Exorcist II DVD from Amazon:



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