The Exorcist

1973 • 121 minutes
1.16K reviews
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About this movie

Novelist William Peter Blatty based his best-seller on the last known Catholic-sanctioned exorcism in the United States. Blatty transformed the little boy in the 1949 incident into a little girl named Regan, played by 14-year-old Linda Blair. Suddenly prone to fits and bizarre behavior, Regan proves quite a handful for her actress-mother, Chris MacNeil (played by Ellen Burstyn, although Blatty reportedly based the character on his next-door neighbor Shirley MacLaine). When Regan gets completely out of hand, Chris calls in young priest Father Karras (Jason Miller), who becomes convinced that the girl is possessed by the Devil and that they must call in an exorcist: namely, Father Merrin (Max von Sydow). His foe proves to be no run-of-the-mill demon, and both the priest and the girl suffer numerous horrors during their struggles. The Exorcist received a theatrical rerelease in 2000, in a special edition that added 11 minutes of footage trimmed from the film's original release and digitally enhanced Chris Newman's Oscar-winning sound work.

Ratings and reviews

1.16K reviews
SassyHershsey SassyHershey
June 8, 2013
Enough said. You wonder why the other producers just don't get it. Gore is not the key, truth is. And though the real story was in 1949 and was a boy, and the real one took 6 weeks in a mental hospital with a WWII veteran Jesuit Priest, The Book tells the guts of the story enough and I live in Georgetown not far from the movie version.
Susan Florence
December 3, 2015
silliest movies, I've ever seen. I thought the audience had to be plants, with all their howling and screeching. I had to muffle my mouth to try to stop laughing. I love imitating Linda Blair. It's a comedy routine of someone with Tourette syndrome. Ugh.
40 people found this review helpful
Tim Rose
May 1, 2013
Saw this when it was released in 1973 and it still scares me to this day even though I've seen it probably 50 times since then.This was back during a time when all you needed was a great script, first rate acting and just enough funding as was needed to tell the story. This wasn't a movie that hinged it's success on boobs, gore, $200M dollars and mindless over done special effects.