It must be very difficult for a film director to make a sequel to an established masterpiece.
The weight of expectation towards The Exorcist 3 even though it was the second sequel and not the first, must have been massive. Fortunately, the end result is pretty good.
Fifteen years have passed since the events that occurred in the original (the coke frenzy that is The Exorcist 2: The Heretic is disregarded here- something that some would applaud). Lieutenant Kinderman notices that a series of demonically themed killings resemble the work of The Gemini Killer who is actually deceased.
I love the freakier and more surreal moments of this film. There is a humdinger of a scare involving a nurse and a nun brandishing some shears. There’s also a great dream/nightmare sequence that I loved. These moments show true vision that is undeterred by the original.
The Exorcist 3 feels like a highly original TV movie in its tone and visual style which is certainly a departure from Friedkin’s film. It never drags, bores or feels generic. The cast is excellent with such heavyweights as George C Scott, Brad Dourif and even sees Jason Miller returning.
File The Exorcist 3 in the ‘sequels which are actually pretty good’ category.
Fun fact- the back cover of the Siouxsie and the Banshees tour programme from 1991 features the statement ‘It’s a wonderfull life’. When I first saw it I felt embarrassed that they hadn’t seen such a blazingly obvious misspelling. But the joke was on me- the spelling was intentional as Siouxsie is a massive Exorcist 3 fan and kept the Gemini Killer’s original spelling.
3 stars out of 5