'The Exorcist (Extended Director's Cut)'
(Ellen Burstyn, Max von Sydow, Linda Blair, Lee J. Cobb, Kitty Winn, et al / DVD / NR / 2010 / Warner Bros.)
Overview: Director William Friedkin was a hot ticket in Hollywood after the success of The French Connection, and he turned heads (in more ways than one) when he decided to make The Exorcist as his follow-up film. Adapted by William Peter Blatty from his controversial bestseller, this shocking 1973 thriller set an intense and often-copied milestone for screen terror with its unflinching depiction of a young girl (Linda Blair) who is possessed by an evil spirit.
DVD Verdict: Well, considering it's Halloween month and this just arrived for review, I guess I shall now review one of the absolute most well-known horror movies of all time - and certainly one of the most horrifying, 'The Exorcist.'
Watching 'The Exorcist' all the way through is more like an experience than watching a movie. For one thing, the general idea of the movie is a plausible concept, and having been to a paranormal speaker just last night, who ironically spoke of and showed a video of an exorcism for which she witnessed, this sort of thing is not entirely impossible, although it almost never happens. I don't want to dwindle on this part too much, but also regarding that I'm Roman Catholic, this movie definitely hits home with me.
But back to the movie itself. It kicks off with a scene that takes place in Egypt if I'm not mistaken, on an excavation dig with the foreign scenery setting a mood and atmosphere that carries throughout the whole movie. Starting the movie like this is an interesting idea, and a concept that hasn't been done too much by other movies, even though it works here. The acting throughout is phenomenal, alongside the special effects, which goes without saying.
The whole movie plays out like a terrifying, dark, atmospheric nightmare and never loses its intensity or interest, even in the slower moments. I must say, even though I personally sometimes find it tedious to sit through a movie that goes over two hours long, I think "The Exorcist" definitely has the hutspah to make it pull you in for the whole thing. As dark and terrifying as this movie is, it most certainly still packs a brilliance, alongside talented writing and directing that makes it worth the watch.
In short, 'The Exorcist' (whether it be in Extended form or otherwise) is a film that's just as horrifying as it is both groundbreaking and vastly interesting. Such a movie deserves to go down as one of the greatest horror movies ever made, and considering I'm a guy who's seen countless horror movies, I agree with that statement. And, well, as for the Extended Version label on the front of this one, yes, there are indeed 12 more minutes seen here that never were released in the first showings of the film.
Well, the review's about up, but for those that haven't seen such a heart-pounding, groundbreaking, interest-stirring movie yet (and WHY haven't you, for God's sake?!), this film comes highly recommended. [WD] This is a Widescreen Presentation (1.78:1) enhanced for 16x9 TVs and comes with the Special Features of:
Commentary by William Friedkin
Trailers, TV Spots & Radio Spots (from the film’s 2000 release)