Generally unfavorable reviews - based on 22 Critics What's this?

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Mixed or average reviews- based on 49 Ratings

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  • Summary: In the place where Evil was born, Father Merrin will finally see its true face. (Warner Bros.)
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 0 out of 22
  2. Negative: 11 out of 22
  1. Here's a popcorn movie with soul, welcoming the masses to consider how much can change in popular culture over 30 years, as the horrific becomes the familiar.
  2. Reviewed by: Kevin Crust
    A perfectly mediocre horror film. There is some hoot-inducing dialogue and cheesy effects, but the film's workmanlike narrative marches gamely forward, managing a handful of respectable scares along the way.
  3. Nothing fails like bad horror. But it's not despicable. It is merely boring.
  4. The devil is back in Exorcist: The Beginning, and he is more disgusting than ever. Not more scary, just really yucky, in a kind of maggots-on-a-pizza-slice way.
  5. The scariest thing about this film is how desperate the makers are to earn a scream.
  6. The risible dialogue, the bulging eyeballs, the heaving bosoms, the digitally rendered hyenas and squirming maggots, the movie fails to achieve the status of the instant camp classic. That's partly because the vibe of the film is too torpid.
  7. 11
    Sloppy, confusing, and dull as a dented crucifix.

See all 22 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 13 out of 30
  2. Negative: 12 out of 30
  1. AlecB.
    Jun 25, 2007
    i actually really enjoyed this movie a lot.. . but it didn't really show how it all began now. Basically it was just a body count movie with tons of violence and gore and scary images. There wasn't even a exorcism in the movie except that cheap one at the end. Expand
  2. RevaE.
    Sep 2, 2004
    I can't tell how much I would have paid $10 extra if Friedkin had directed it. Even though his way was somewhat simplistic it still was one of the best horror films I've ever seen (the original). On that note, usually when people hear "The Exorcist" they still get those images of Reagan's demonic face. For most people, the images (and possibly voice) will stay with them forever, its made such an impact in people's minds. The thing I liked most about The Beginning was how it makes you think about how much the Churches actually DO cover up. (I wouldn't expect you to realize this if your one of those people who go to see a movie for the 'hot' actors.) Think on it for a second or two, Priests are still taught how to preform Exorcisms today. People like to often argue the fact that this can never happen and never has. If it can or hasn't happened, why are the priests still taught the rituals today? ... Also, I liked how they showed the church, the tomb with the stairs leading down was rather overused but it worked. Things I really didn't like were how they had the war, I'm sure we're all aware of the fighting in Africa. It didn't really give much to the real story and plot other than the area around the Church is like a playground of evil. Which again, is made aware by other scenes in the film. People who bash this movie and think the Ring and the Village 'out-scare' it, should not brag. Of course Sequels and Prequels are not commonly as good as the first, lets face its true. Anyways, I found The Beginning entertaining. The CGI was wasn't bad, you want to see bad? Go see Anacondas. I think Harlin tried TOO hard to live up to the original. Nothing mean towards Harlin, but I'm sixteen and I couldn't directed some of the scenes better. Still, I was happy to see that this wasn't as bad as the Washington Post claimed it was. If you don't like this film, you can always stay home and watch the original, it never gets old. Expand
  3. MarcD.
    Oct 27, 2006
    Lacks focus and any true sense of pace. It steers clear of the psychological themes and horror from the original, instead hoping to evoke some reactions by throwing as much ugly effects at us as possible. Unfortunately, fear doesn't work that way. Expand
  4. Aug 19, 2011
    I watched this today with my boyfriend and during the movie I predicted what would happen, and I was right every time. It was just too predictable and like other movies. Don't really see exactly how this is the beginning, and the movie stunk too much to watch it again to understand. :/ Plus, the DVD features were extra boring. Expand

See all 30 User Reviews