The Last Exorcism (2010)

The Last Exorcism (2010) – So the whole “found footage” gimmick really should be played out by now, but as it happens enough new innovative movies employing it keep coming out. I had all but written off the Paranormal Activity movies but when I actually saw them I rather enjoyed them. I like The Last Exorcism because for 90% of the movie seems like something that could happen. Patrick Fabian (Veronica’s Criminology professor from Veronica Mars) gives a dynamic lead performance as Reverend Cotton Marcus. Cotton is an exorcist, as you might guess. He was started young by his father, also a pastor and an exorcist. For the last several years, though, Cotton has been full of shit. He’s not even sure if he believes in God and he definitely doesn’t believe in demons. He believe that people believe they’re possessed and that performing an exorcism ceremony might help them achieve peace of mind. After he reads a story about a child smothered during an exorcism (which I think I remember reading somewhere before, but I’m not sure)

Fed up with the whole exorcism thing, Cotton has volunteered to be the subject of a documentary where he will expose the secrets of being a fraudulent exorcist. Accompanied by documentarian Iris (Iris Bahr) and cameraman Daniel (Adam Grimes), he goes out to the farm of Louis Sweetzer (Louis Herthum) to help with his daughter Nell (Ashley Bell). The greatest strength of the film is how it plays with ambiguity. Obviously in any movie about exorcism, we as movie-goers have been conditioned to suspect a demon, but early on Cotton says he believes that Nell has a psychological disorder. The way the movie plays it, it could go either way. By the end of the movie it’s pretty clear which one. They could have kept the ambiguity all the way through the end and I would have been happy, but I also like the way the movie turned out. The Last Exorcism is worth checking out.

One Response to “The Last Exorcism (2010)”
  1. CMrok93 says:

    Didn’t like it all that much probably because it started to feel less and less like a found-footage horror film and more like a bad horror film that didn’t really use its gimmick well. Nice review regardless.

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