Monday, August 02, 2004

Exorcist: The Beginning

Once this movie gets a little gas and gets going, it's really kind of a blast, in its way: Stellan Skarsgard (reprising Max von Sydow's role from the original) going toe-to-toe with the Devil Incarnate, armed with only faith and a half-empty bottle of holy water. Unfortunately, it takes an hour and a half to get there, and in the meantime, director Renny Harlin (Cliffhanger) has nothing but easy, cheap "scares" you've seen a million times -- clocks that stop ticking for no reason, lamps and lanterns that go out of their own accord, windows and doors opening by themselves, crazy people scribbling extremely detailed drawings of horrible things, maggots, crows, blood appearing for no reason, festering sores, leeches, and bad, bad CGI. (The digital hyenas in this flick look worse than the wolves in The Day After Tomorrow. No, seriously.) If you can stay awake long enough to get there, though, the last twenty minutes or so are almost worth waiting for.

Rating: **

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