The Exorcist (2023) - Can David Gordon Green screw up another reboot trilogy?

Universal spent $400 million on the forthcoming “Exorcist” trilogy, produced by Blumhouse, with Ellen Burstyn) set to reprise her role as Chris MacNeil, the mother who hired two Catholic priests to perform an exorcism on her demonically possessed 12-year-old (Linda Blair) in the 1973 original movie.

Leslie Odom Jr. (Hamilton, Knives Out 2) will star in the new Exorcist trilogy, the first of which is confirmed to be directed by Gordon Green. And Ellen Burstyn is back as Chris MacNeil.

Ann Dowd (Hereditary) is also on board to star.

The first plot details we were provided with last year tease, “Odom Jr. will play the father of a possessed child. Desperate for help, he tracks down Ms. Burstyn’s character.”

Based on how Halloween ended up… Yuck. No thank you.

I though the recent tv series on Fox was fantastic, they really dropped the ball canceling that.

Another pointless remake.

Right? If this weren’t part of a Blumhouse deal, I’d be more inclined toward curiosity about what direction David Gordon Green wants to take it. But as a three-picture deal for Universal, obviously chasing Jurassic Park and Fast-and-Furious style franchises, this is sure to be the usual hot mess, and probably a colossal disservice to the first and even third movies.

But whatever happens, it’s sure to be an improvement over the second movie! See you there on opening day, @Telefrog! :)

Hahaha. You know me too well. Despite my kvetching, curiosity will win.

You two have chosen the worst genre to obsess over.

Good thing they got Ellen Burstyn on board. Everyone’s been aching to know what’s up with Regan’s mom after all these years decades.

No lie, but the horror genre has given me more highs than any other kind of movie. There’s a ton of dross to sift through to get to some gems, but every now and then a horror movie will show me something I’ve literally never seen before. Not even the most cheer-worthy bits in a Marvel or Star Wars movie has ever moved me like some horror films have.

The experience in the theater when Hereditary forced the audience to really live through that moment? Whew! Nothing else like it.

This reminds me of something from our Prometheus podcast, I think. Prometheus seemed to me like Ridley Scott decided to make a movie explaining the freaky space jockey in Alien, spelling out what it was and what happened to it. Which was a really dumb move and it implies he didn’t understand the appeal of Alien, just as the Thing sequel thought it was really clever explaining an axe in the wall in the original movie. These touches don’t need explanation. They say what they need to say through suggestion. All we needed to know about the space jockey we could infer from what we saw in Giger’s amazing design in Alien. Detailing the lore just de-mystifies it, cheapens it, betrays a lack of confidence in the art and production design.

The analogy I made was, “What if William Friedkin thought everyone wanted a movie explaining what made that scary noise in the attic in that scene early in The Exorcist?”

We may find out, after all.

If Anne Dowd is the one possessed, I might check it out.

There are times when I think that it’s the best canvas - in a broad sense - for telling stories. The good horror comedies - especially rare though they may be - just hit so different for me.

The second movie of this “trilogy” will use the Nut o Fun as a significant part of the plot.

“Pazuzu dies tonight!”

As one of the rare people on this planet who didn’t understand why the original Exorcist was supposed to be scary in any way, I say bring on the reboot. It can’t possibly be any less scary than the original.

Coincidentally I just watched Exorcist III last night. Pretty good. Kinda weird. Not exactly intimately tied to the original movie (although I eventually realized a couple of the characters were meant to be from it but had been recast).

PS: For some reason it has Fabio, Larry King, and Samuel L. Jackson in it - I didn’t actually notice the latter two but Fabio was an angel in the dream sequence. Jackson’s also listed as being in the dream sequence. Guessing King probably was too? I dunno.

It also has Patrick Ewing and C. Everett Koop in the dream sequence!

I don’t know who those people are, or I would have probably reacted more to that.

I remember seeing it as a teen on TV and it terrified me. That movie was all kinds of unsettling.

I don’t know when you saw it, but at release (73?) it was far beyond what had appeared in horror movies up until then.

But I agree that shocking would be a better term than scary.

It’s definitely the most elastic genre. You can with such a wide variety of tones under the horror umbrella. I’ve been watching a horror movie a day for October, and if it was any other genre, it would have gotten stale by now. (It also helps that horror movies love keeping it to 90 minutes.)

I agree! Those contrasting tones can work wonders. It may be the furthest distance a movie can take you emotionally, from fear to laughter.

I recently watched Extra Ordinary and Bodies Bodies Bodies. Both were good (not great) but I love that genre blend.

Back on topic, I’m always going to root for David Gordon Green and give him the benefit of the doubt. I hope this turns out well!