Road Rash Reviews

The Exorcism Cinema Review***--

Cert 15 | 95 mins | 2024

3 star solid possession horror.

The Exorcism is a 2024 American supernatural horror film, written by M.A. Fortin (The Final Girls) and Joshua John Miller (The Mao Game), who also directs.

It is coming to UK cinemas from 21st June 2024, courtesy of Vertigo Releasing.

“Forgive me Father for I have sinned. It has been forty years since my last confession. I had a drinking problem and that became a drug problem and I ruined my life. I ruined the lives of my family.”

Tony (Russell Crowe – Gladiator, A Beautiful Mind) is a struggling actor battling drink and drug addiction. He let his family down when they needed him and now he is riddled with guilt.

His daughter Lee (Ryan Simpkins – Edge of Everything, Revolutionary Road) is resentful and has just been expelled from school and he is trying hard to rebuild their relationship.

When a tragedy occurs in the set of new horror film ‘The Georgetown Project’, he spots an opportunity to get back into acting and auditions for director Pete (Adam Goldberg – Between Us, Rebirth). Despite reservations, he is hired for the job. With Lee as his new P.A. they head to set to begin filming. Here Lee meets Blake (Chloe BaileyJane, Praise This) the young star who shares her misgivings about the production, she’s worried about being a part of a ‘cursed film’.

Shooting begins, with proceedings overseen by catholic consultant Father Conor (David Hyde Pierce – Frasier (TV Series), The Perfect Host) but it soon becomes apparent that it is taking its toll on Tony, who is unable to deliver his lines, much to the annoyance of co-star Joe (Sam WorthingtonNine Bullets, Lansky). Is his troubled past with the church coming back to haunt him, or is there something more sinister going on?

“I got a lot of pushback when I hired you, you know? Because nobody thought you could be the hero again, not after what they read about you. But you looked me in the eye and you told me you could be good.”

The Exorcism is an entertaining film with an excellent premise. We are all familiar with the concept of a ‘cursed film’ but I very much liked the idea of making a film about the making of one.

The acting is excellent, with Crowe doing a very good job of being a brilliant actor playing an actor who can’t act, not an easy task I should imagine (To clear up any potential confusion, this is not in any way related to the other Russell Crowe demonic possession film which hit the screens recently).

I do wish they had made more use of Sam Worthington and David Hyde Pierce, both actors who are capable of far more than they were given to work with here.

One of the most interesting aspects of the film is the set, it’s fascinating to see the sound stage and how it operates, as well as the cold room and other aspects of production. In terms of pacing, it did feel a little slow in places, but overall it still worked well. While having a good premise, it was quite cliched in places and as always these days, one too many nods to modern fashions and sensibilities (not every film has to have women kissing in it – stop it, you’re not adding anything to the narrative).

All things considered, there are some worthy jump scares, some eye watering and surprising contortions from Russell Crowe and this is a good film which is well worth a trip to the cinema.

“We can’t always save people, but we can forgive them, so I’m told.”

The Exorcism is coming to UK cinemas from 21st June 2024.

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DirectorJoshua John Miller
StarringRussell Crowe, Ryan Simpkins, Sam Worthington, David Hyde Pierce
Category: Cinema, film, Review