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24 of 27 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Personally, I wouldn't drive out the Devil, but I'd buy him a bus ticket.
THE LAST EXORCISM is a "mockumentary" in the style of THE BLAIR WITCH PROJECT, chronicling the last exorcism performed by Preacher Cotton Marcus (Patrick Fabian), a televangelist who has made himself famous by performing psychosuggestive exorcisms on credulous subjects. After reading of the death of a child by exorcism, the Preacher renounces his stage-managed...
Published on January 16, 2011 by Konrei

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43 of 50 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars She's Got the Devil In Her Heart
A little light on the action and (very) long on the story, The Last Exorcism is still a pretty effective Horror movie. While the trailer gives the impression that the movie will be entirely about a demon-possessed young lady on a rampage (I think there's a pretty famous movie like that out there already), it is equally about the final exploits of one of those hoaxy...
Published on January 12, 2011 by Sky


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43 of 50 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars She's Got the Devil In Her Heart, January 12, 2011
This review is from: The Last Exorcism [Blu-ray] (Blu-ray)
A little light on the action and (very) long on the story, The Last Exorcism is still a pretty effective Horror movie. While the trailer gives the impression that the movie will be entirely about a demon-possessed young lady on a rampage (I think there's a pretty famous movie like that out there already), it is equally about the final exploits of one of those hoaxy healing ministers who after years of performing (fake) exorcisms starts feeling guilty and decides to expose himself and the trade for what it is through a documentary.

While the movie clocks in at under 90 minutes, it's still a little long and could have been done in a half hour episode of Tales from the Crypt. That format unfortunately is not available for filmmakers anymore (and certainly wouldn't have been as profitable). So little known Director Daniel Stamm found a cast of little known actors and created a full length feature that for the most part was pretty entertaining.

The gist of the story is that this fraudulent healing minister shows up with his TV crew at a farmer's house who claims that his daughter is possessed. The healer aims to document and to disprove the idea of possession while at the same time going through the exorcism motions to simultaneously expose his whole racket. But our minister may have found not only his first real case of possession on this particular farm but also his faith.

To all the critics of this movie, and there seems to be a lot of them....What were you expecting? An Exorcist remake? Go watch The Exorcist again. The Last Exorcism puts a pretty cool spin on a story of possession, and the B cast does an excellent job of leading the viewer through this creepy tale. Definitely worth a spot in your rental queue if you're into the genre.
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24 of 27 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Personally, I wouldn't drive out the Devil, but I'd buy him a bus ticket., January 16, 2011
By 
Konrei "Everything I need is right here" (Boca Raton, Florida and Brooklyn, New York) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Last Exorcism (DVD)
THE LAST EXORCISM is a "mockumentary" in the style of THE BLAIR WITCH PROJECT, chronicling the last exorcism performed by Preacher Cotton Marcus (Patrick Fabian), a televangelist who has made himself famous by performing psychosuggestive exorcisms on credulous subjects. After reading of the death of a child by exorcism, the Preacher renounces his stage-managed performances and embraces medical science. During the course of the film he demonstrates his "demonic" sound-producing equipment and a battery operated smoking crucifix.

Marcus brings a camera along to the home of his last "possessed" adherent, a young girl named Nell, who lives on an isolated farm with her hostile brother and gun-toting father. Farm animals have been found mutilated on the premises. The father is convinced that Nell has killed them. He wants to shoot Nell in order to stop any more evil from occurring, but Preacher Marcus convinces him to allow the exorcism. Although it initially seems to work, soon increasingly bizarre things begin occurring. Marcus is convinced that mental illness is to blame, but the Bible-intoxicated father insists on another round of exorcism.

As the story progresses,the viewer is left to wonder if the father, the brother or the daughter is the perpetrator. The family seems severely dysfunctional, and Nell appears to be a victim. For the first half of the film, it isn't even clear whether this IS a documentary or not. As most of the cast is little-known, the film's director maintains this fiction for a long while. It is only near the end that the question is answered.

I did not expect to enjoy this film, but it was oddly compelling and quite convincing. The close of the film lacked the large payoff that seemed promised, but THE LAST EXORCISM is certainly worth seeing if you are a fan of the genre.
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50 of 63 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Honestly, I don't understand why so many people disliked it., November 18, 2010
This review is from: The Last Exorcism (DVD)
I saw this movie with a buddy shortly after getting back from a couple differant flights. I was pleased with the movie(Being an avid non theater kinda guy, 9.75 for one ticket!?!) and felt it was well worth the 10 bucks. My buddy didn't like it, Upon questioning later he said in so many words "Because I didn't want that to be the ending, I wanted to see more". I agree, If there is a sequel I will definatly see it if I'm not busy. I'll elaborate on what some of the other negative reviews said.

-Shakey Camera and Dizzyness. I had absolutly no problem with it, I hardly noticied it after awhile into the film. Though, I have been drown proofed, water boarded, jumped out of helicopters 70 feet above the river, done the "run and puke", etc. I don't have a problem with dizzyness unless I am severly dehydrated. I felt the camera shakeing that was there really added to the "realism" of what the story was trying to convey onto how "We" see it. And, for your typical movie goer, I would think add a flavor of "OMG" while walking back into thier dark empty house. Also, My buddy has none of the military or paramilitary backround that I do, he had no problem with dizzyness or the camera "Shakeing".
-The ending. Everyones an individual; with that said, I disagree. I really enjoyed the ending, and my buddy would to if they elaborated on it(Sequel. I'm sure some people will yell something about Capatalism. I'm sure most of them have a shiny rock on thier finger or thier wife does...) The people that didn't like the story and/or ending to thier movie remind me of the people who at the end of the Sixth Sense went "Oh Come On! He never notices the exit wound!?!".
-It being a "fake" documentary. Really? You felt the need to post that? If this really happened you wouldn't pay 9.75 to see it, It'd be all over every major news network. If you arien't thrilled with them putting out "fake" documentarys, Why did you pay to see this? And if you didn't pay to see this, Well, Can you complain about the brakes on a stolen car?
-Bad acting. Well, Then i'm curious what qualifys as "good" acting. I thought the acting was outstanding, Especially considering that the girl playing Nell did all that crazy bending of her body naturally. That is not special effects. Considering I've dated some pretty flexiable girls and I am double jointed myself, I cringed at a scene when they attempt to make a "deal with the demon".
-Not scary(enough). Well, The theater I was in everyone I had eyes on jumped several times. Myself included. It wasn't "I'm afraid to go to my car" scary for anybody that I saw. You weren't scared, so what?

So to finish, See this movie at your "Own risk". I thought the movie was good, Not great. I made this review to help put in perspective some of the negative reviews. Many people(like my buddy), went home immediatly afterwards mad about the ending. The ending doesn't leave any more plot holes than any other movie, probably less. Rent it for a couple bucks, See it. If you don't like, move on. Don't say "That was a waste of 3 dollars and an hour and a half!". You could have been doing any number of productive things. I've seen 17 year olds who complained less during log PT. I wouldn't say its a diamond with a flaw, More of a perfect pebble. Hopefully, You enjoy it.
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12 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Creepy Weird and Worthwhile!, January 5, 2011
This review is from: The Last Exorcism (DVD)
First of all I thought the ending was the best part. If you thought it was randomly tacked on you obviously weren't paying attention. It was carefully, sneakily alluded too several times. And it was straight out of Lovecraft.

Secondly complaining about the quality of the film is another useless criticism. It is supposed to be a fake documentary. And in that it succeeds brilliantly. In the first couple of moments of the film I found myself reacting with a little skepticism, until I realized that the Cotton character was pitch perfect for a contemporary fraud. Likewise Ashley Bell does a perfect job. She was just off enough, unlike a movie actress, to make me believe in her. The other actors likewise all felt more like real folks than actors.

Thirdly this was not pastiche. This was not a crude slapping together of Rosemary's Baby, Marjoe and the Exorcist. (And when have you seen these things put together before???) Yes it had elements linking those films, but it was hardly culled from them. And the imitation documentary angle really threw it into another zone.

And most importantly the film actually had some intellectual muscles on it. It was a bit of a treatise on the loss of faith in a deeply ironic time. Eli Roth and the other producers say as much in their commentary. Having Cotton pick up his plastic cross to try to find faith again was at the heart of the whole film.

Now the people who hate this film seem to be the kind of folks who like a horror film to run on predictable tracks. I have a friend who just told me she thought it was stupid. No further explanation. She's hated some other films that seemed to have a point to them as well. Well for some people things just suck or are stupid. The cure for such simplistic criticisms might be to watch a few films with subtitles: fat chance of that.

But for my money... If a films engenders really polarized opinions something interesting is most likely going on. And if you like films with brains and subtlety and good acting check this film out and make up your own mind.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Thoroughly Clever and Creepy, September 16, 2012
This film has a slow build up from a comedic, light documentary style to thoroughly disturbing. I think the slow build up was both calculated and added to the creepy nature of the later parts of the film. The story takes the viewer from laughing along at the ignorance and farce of the exorcism and believers to wondering what is really going on. The ending just tied the rest of it together and gave you the answer. I thought the skepticism inherent in the main characters added a lot. And frankly from the perspective of a non-believer that brought you into the plot starting at the same perspective of the rest of the audience. So, it was easier to follow him down the road they laid out for you. The characters were very realistic, not hollywood glamour types and that made it more believable. I count this as one of the best horror movies I've seen.

The people who complained about the movie being too slow or wanting monster action are people that should stick to watching dumbed-down action flicks. This is more thought out than what they are used to. The slower build up of plot is say more like a story is supposed to be.
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29 of 40 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars The last 3 minutes DESTROY a fairly good film, January 18, 2011
This review is from: The Last Exorcism (DVD)
This is worth a rental and I saw it in the theater and was really enjoying it--until the final 3 minutes.

No spoilers here, just a warning that the end of this movie is just dreadful. Also, MANY of the scenes in the trailer and shown in the poster do NOT occur in the film. The poster of her bent over backward---well, she bends over backwards, but not THAT far.

And the poster with her on the ceiling? Never happens.

Again, a rental that really delivers--until the end....
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Finally someone got it right!, January 5, 2013
By 
Robert (Houston, TX USA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
I'm generally left pretty flat by today's showy monsters that dissolve all of the suspense before the story even starts. As many fans will attest -- the F.E.A.R. video game franchise got horror right, giving you flashes of visual and aural (is that the right word?) horror and leaving the rest of the job up to your imagination. This movie got it right, too.

Often times the thought of what's lurking in that dark shadow is scarier than what's actually there, and The Last Exorcism takes it one step further by casting that dark shadow behind a pair of seemingly lifeless eyes. I spent half the film making up my own horror stories about what was in there. The antagonist in this movie (the possessed girl) wins a gold star in my book for giving me a good palette on which to paint my own scary pictures. Quite frankly, I found her to be scarier than the Exorcist girl (hats-off to one of the all-time greats).

I also like the fact that this movie eschewed a lot of the cliche scare tricks that have been done by Hollywood time and time and time again. I'll leave that so as not to spoil anything... but will say that I also don't feel it was a compromise, i.e. "we told her to make a scary face because we couldn't afford make-up". On the contrary, I think the direction, photography, and acting all combined well to pull off the scares without all of the hammy, overblown, computerized bulls*** that Hollywood tries to force down our throats these days.

Because many of them are so disappointing, I tend to stay away from Horror unless it's one of the classics (Alien, The Exorcist, etc.). I was pleasantly surprised by this film. The acting was good (if not great), the script was good, and it gave me some good frights. I was slightly disappointed by the ending, but it wasn't a deal breaker. I'll definitely watch this movie again.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Meanders and disappoints..., January 18, 2011
This review is from: The Last Exorcism (DVD)
What starts as an intriguing premise slowly degrades into a silly take on exorcism and religion. This is The Wicker Man rehashed-complete with a twist ending that is discouraging at best. Bell does a great turn as the victim, however Fabian's character is unlikable and hard to watch. You don't care about his journey. The "documentary" feel is OK, but doesn't add anything new here. Southern setting is helpful and creepy, but not enough to save this film. Watch only for Bell's performance, otherwise it simply doesn't achieve the level of fright that it promises.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Blu Ray Review, and enjoy this film for what it is, January 8, 2011
By 
This review is from: The Last Exorcism [Blu-ray] (Blu-ray)
First and foremost, this is primarily intended to be a review of the Blu Ray version, and my general comments will follow. For the Blu Ray version, its an outstanding product, ultra crisp, high quality video, and every bit as impressive as you'd expect from a Blu Ray disc. If you are inclined to buy this movie, I'd highly encourage you to buy the Blu Ray, its worth the upgrade.

As for the film itself, the reviews more than sufficiently identify this film's shortcoming. And that shortcoming, i.e., the ending, is vast. However, I'm a firm believer that a movie can be fully enjoyed for the quality of a few scenes, independent of the entirety of a film. This movie falls into that category. IMHO, there are a few possession scenes that are so well done and creepy, this movie can be enjoyed for those scenes alone. Just accept from the beginning that the ending is highly disappointing (but should not be a surprise for anyone familiar with Eli Roth's work), and let yourself enjoy the rest.
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17 of 24 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars What was this?, January 17, 2011
This review is from: The Last Exorcism (DVD)
Thar be spoilers here

Based on its average 5/10 rating on IMDB, I expected a lame movie. What I got was a lame movie, with an extra heap of bad, and a twist ending so off-the-wall and incoherent, it's comical.

The movie plays itself like a documentary, featuring Cotton Marcus, a charismatic young reverend and family man who is perfectly performed with great subtlty and realism by Patrick Fabian. The level of sleaze you get from the way he preaches and what he says to the documentary crew is perfectly balanced by innocence and/or well-meaning. It's not exactly disrespectful or offensive that, daring the interviewer he could preach his mother's banana bread recipe and people wouldn't notice, in mid-preaching he ends up doing it, and receives the same exultations he received preaching scripture.

Another thing which struck me was how he claims he does not believe in demons or exorcisms, yet still does (and charges) for exorcisms anyway, not because he's a conman or a crook, but because he believes he is helping the person with their psychological delusion of posession, and of course is doing a job and needs to be paid; he has a family.

So for the documentary crew, he responds to a call for an exorcism to show them on camera. The amount of time the film actually takes just for the introduction and the prelude is rather long, and would be a waste of time if Fabian weren't so deeply involved in his role. When they come to the area, they stop a young man to ask where the farm is. He says they're going the wrong way, they need to make a U-turn, go past where they saw everything already, and go back where they came, which was a pretty elaborate way of telling them to go EFF themselves or to please leave. Then he throws mud clods or rocks at their car when they go to the farm anyway.

Awkwardness abounds as it turns out the man is the son of Louis Sweetzer, the guy who called about the posession. We then go about introductions to the various people, Caleb being the son, Nell being the daughter who was posessed, supposedly, and brief insight into the family history. Then we get an interesting few scenes as Cotton Marcus unfolds that bit of conman out, showing how he sets everything up like a magician or a carnie, dropping something into a bowl of water Nell's feet are in so the water bubbles, a sign that something is wrong with her, to making sure her bed is slightly wobbly, tying fishing wire around it, hiding small speakers to play various types of sounds, screams, 'demonic' voices, etcetera, with some of it interspersed with the actual exorcism itself. While Caleb has him figured out, he wants to watch anyway because it's funny.

The exorcism comes off rather comedic without any background music or atmosphere, and with Cotton Marcus hamming it up to a boisterous degree, concluding with him supposedly pulling the demon out, and clutching a crucifix, which a cutaway shows us is modified with an engine of some sort inside to blow smoke out, as though it were burning him.

Of course by the end of it, he goes to the hotel, the father is grateful, and the story isn't over at all, as you know, and Nell ends up coming to their hotel in the middle of the night, some five miles away from the house, kissing and grinding against the woman leading the documentary, and suddenly throwing up, and they take her to the hospital.

To their credit, the film makes it seem as though she's lying about this in order to hide a secret pregnancy or something of the sort, which the documentary woman initially suspects might be the result of her father raping her.

More and more horror-type stuff happens, such as Nell walking around at night, acting scary and quiet, to the cameraman shutting off the camera, only for the camera to come back on, obviously stolen by Nell as it films her feet, then films her wandering about crazily, and then using the camera to beat a cat to death, which SHOCK! she drew a picture of a cat with bloodspots and holes in it the day earlier! She also drew a picture of a man standing before a big fire with a crucifix, and of the cameraguy stabbed dead and the documentary woman beheaded.

Because the local pastor Joseph Manley had a falling out with Louis, they can't convince him to take the girl to a psychiatrist or a mental help specialist. She starts acting crazy again, including slicing Caleb's face with a knife, and after enough craziness and with Louis threatening them with a gun, Cotton Marcus agrees to do another exorcism. This time, Nell does crazier things, like arching her back sharply, screaming and claiming she's a demon, rather realistic without special effects loony-ness, but also rather convincing.

However, he figures out she's faking it (somehow) because she taunts him by asking if he wanted her to give him a "blowing job" which he figures a 16-year old girl homeschooled for several years wouldn't know what it's properly called. He calls out her, and she breaks down and confesses that she had sex with a boy named Logan who worked at a cafe. Her speaking in the third person seems maybe to imply that she's "pretending" to still be a demon or something. Pastor Manley and his assistant Becky Davis then come to provide religious comforting and counseling for them while Marcus and the others leave.

At this point, the movie is almost completely over, and thus far seems to not really have a coherent plot. What is shown is that Nell was apparently lying and pretending to be posessed in order to hide a pregnancy, but this isn't ever really made clear, and is further muddled by Nell apparently still "pretending" to be posessed even while describing the events leading to her having sex and getting pregnant.

Then, Cotton Marcus decides to stop by the cafe and find Logan. Logan claims he never had sex with Nell and barely knew her, that they just met at a party or gathering thrown by Pastor Manley, and implies he isn't interested in Nell, while the camera focuses on his vaguely feminine mannerisms. In the car, they just outright claim he's gay, and head back to the farm to find out what's happening.

SPOILER

When they get there, the house is empty, with satanic imagery painted all over the walls, and they head out into the woods, hearing chanting, and they find... Nell laying on a table in an open field, with a bonfire burning, and Pastor Manley dressed in red robes chanting stuff with people around him, and Louis tied up and blindfolded nearby.

This is apparently the twist ending; the Pastor is a satanist, and they're having some satanic ceremony in which they pull the baby out of Nell, and it's "not human" because it's small and making weird squealy noises. They then throw it into the bonfire for some reason. Then, REMEMBER THE PICTURES! The ones Nell drew. Cotton Marcus runs up to the bonfire as it grows comically larger, holding up a crucifix, and someone attacks the documentary woman and decapitates her with a shovel, leaving the cameraman to run off on his own when suddenly OH NOESZ he runs into Caleb, with a bandage over his sliced face! And Caleb kills the cameraguy. And then it just ends.

SPOILER END

A movie with a twist ending usually (if it's a decent movie) has that twist ending occur as it a driving force behind the movie's plot, with blatant hints left for people to pick up, and completely misinterpret (like The Sixth Sense). Some twist endings seemingly come out of nowhere, but have a firm basis in the plot, some bit of foreshadowing, and ultimately make sense when you think about it in retrospect (like Saw, Saw IV, Fight Club).

What this movie's twist ending instead displays is a complete and utter arse-pull; it comes out of nowhere, with no foreshadowing, no buildup, no hints or clues, nothing whatsoever. And the level of surrealism to it makes it absurd, to the point where where I should have been shocked or terrified, I was completely withdrawn from the immersion of the film, asking "What the hell is this?"
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The Last Exorcism [Blu-ray]
The Last Exorcism [Blu-ray] by Daniel Stamm (Blu-ray - 2011)
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