The Last Exorcism

User Score
6.2

Generally favorable reviews- based on 158 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 78 out of 158
  2. Negative: 32 out of 158
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  1. Aug 29, 2010
    7
    I went in to this movie hoping for a cheesy, poorly acted movie I could really tear to pieces. What I got instead was a surprisingly good, genuinely creepy film. The Last Exorcism really got to me with it's ambiguity as to whether the supernatural were involved in the events, or if it was just a bunch of superstitious swamp dwellers refusing to break from their faith. The ending wasI went in to this movie hoping for a cheesy, poorly acted movie I could really tear to pieces. What I got instead was a surprisingly good, genuinely creepy film. The Last Exorcism really got to me with it's ambiguity as to whether the supernatural were involved in the events, or if it was just a bunch of superstitious swamp dwellers refusing to break from their faith. The ending was abrupt, which at first I found irritating and unfufilling, but thinking back, I think it adds to the ambiguity present throughout the movie. Expand
  2. Sep 13, 2010
    8
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. There's definitely some screams in this film. It starts off like a dull, documentary and then it turns into a fright fest. The film is filmed by one camera man who can be heard in the film to give it the effect of it being a documentary. You are tricked into thinking that the movie won't be scary at all but things change dramatically leaving you shaking in your seat. My boyfriend and I seen this film and even he was jumping with fright so don't get into a false sense of security like I did. If you prepare yourself for this movie then you might not get too much of a shock when people actually die in it. Expand
  3. Sep 14, 2010
    7
    Though this film starts off slow, the character development is really very good and the ending is well worth the film, as you don't really know whether this girl is possessed or not, it makes you think and when the ending does come around, you will be happy with what it gives you as looking back the ending makes a lot of sense.
  4. Sep 16, 2010
    10
    Very very smart and original. And fun. And creepy. The first horror movie I've ever seen where I actually believed the main characters' behavior. And when we thought about it later, more and more pieces fit together. We loved it.
  5. Oct 5, 2011
    7
    I didn't have much high expectations for the film, maybe expecting a "Paranormal Activity"+devil spoof. After a realistically shocking 87 minutes, I knew from the bottom of the heart that I was wrong.
  6. Tyj
    Aug 27, 2010
    8
    This is a very good movie. It's a little slow in the beginning but this is done for character development more then anything. The plot of the movie isn't original- an innocent girl is suspected of being possessed in a Christian farming community- but it is the movie's ending that sets it apart. A must watch for horror fans.
  7. Aug 28, 2010
    8
    Better than I thought it would be. Better than most modern PG-13 horror wanna-bes. Maybe it's not the next "Exorcist", But it's without a doubt up there with the Cloverfields of the world.
  8. Aug 31, 2010
    7
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. As "found films" go, the horror sub-genre's "Citizen Kane", hands down, is not "The Blair Witch Project", the 1999 digital marketing sensation that first alerted Hollywood to the power of the Internet, while scaring technology-addled moviegoers with the power of suggestion, or last year's overrated "Paranormal Activity", an underwhelming digital video shocker of which its attempts to jolt you with disturbed baby powder and bed sheet blowings in a haunted suburban home, couldn't begin to compete with the classic black of the Maryland woods. (In this day and age of CGI effects, you could say that "The Blair Witch Project" reinvented the dark.) As found films go, though, nothing compares to the infamous "Man Bites Dog", the 1992 Belgian production about a serial killer and his complicit crew who shoot a documentary about killing, that undoubtedly inspired Daniel Myrick and Eduardo Sanchez to simulate reality by abstracting the cover art for the Spinal Tap album "Smell the Glove" in Rob Reiner's 1984 mockumentary "This is Spinal Tap". As found films go, however, "The Last Exorcism" differs in one important aspect; whereas "The Blair Witch Project" and "Paranormal Activity" went without an original score, this latest self-reflexive movie experience does. The seemingly improper utilization of music seemingly demythologizes the conceit that the doc-in-the-making was discovered at a presupposed crime scene, since a soundtrack breaks the reality of "reality". Like its aforementioned predecessors, "The Last Exorcism" ends with a death, a closed ending that really isn't closed at all, because such pseudo-amateur movies invite the moviegoer to imagine the document's journey from the police evidence room to the screen. The music creates in your mind an awareness of the post-production; a hypothetical person in the editing bay who, rather than preserve the integrity of the "found footage", made the creative decision to sensationalize death by commissioning a soundtrack, making what would become "The Last Exorcism" a more commercially viable property. What if that hypothetical person turned out to be the reverend himself? The last time we saw Cotton(Patrick Fabian), he was approaching the apocalyptic-looking bonfire with his cross, just before the producer and cameraman run for their lives. How do we know he died? We don't. In the film's final moments, the desperate fleeing of the overwhelmed crew finally ends when Caleb(Caleb Landry Jones) strikes Gerad(Tony Bentley) dead, so consequently, the farmer's son is first on the scene to recover the incriminating footage. Now why would Caleb implicate himself as an accessory and first-hand participant to these cultist murders by delivering the doc-in-the-making to the proper authorities? After all, we're watching the whole ordeal that went down in that small Louisiana town. Would Caleb really out his fellow satanic church parishioners, witnesses to the unholy birth of Nell's child, who could all be identified when Gerad pans across the crowd gathered in the field leading up to the platform where Nell lies prostrate with the kindly old, local preacher and his rotund wife. All these filmic ambiguities help invent a postscript that can be conjectured through what we learn about Cotton. Mainly, the man has no scruples. His agenda, the exposing of fundamentalist Christianity as a fraud, in which the son of a preacher man wants to come clean as a longtime charlatan, will come at a cost: his father's reputation. Secondly, the man is an "entertainer"(his wife's words) who didn't believe in demons. Ever the showman, for the sake of preserving character arc, the music that accompanies Nell's possession would reflect Cotton's previous skepticism about supernatural occurrences(the music bolsters the case for demonic possession at a time when the preacher wasn't a true believer in the devil, and most likely, God), and his natural-born instinct to manipulate an audience. Arguably, Cotton lives; he killed Caleb and desecrated the memory of the fallen film crew by dumbing down the "documentary" with subjectivity. Why? He has no health insurance. Expand
  9. Oct 18, 2010
    7
    Really good movie. Shot in the style of 'mockumentary', it follows a preacher who has come to realize that God isn't really.... all that real. He wants to show exorcists for the charlatan's that they are, and sets about doing so with a camera crew following him. The movie is very slick, smart, and scary. You will leave scared. I don't know the last time I left a movie like this genuinelyReally good movie. Shot in the style of 'mockumentary', it follows a preacher who has come to realize that God isn't really.... all that real. He wants to show exorcists for the charlatan's that they are, and sets about doing so with a camera crew following him. The movie is very slick, smart, and scary. You will leave scared. I don't know the last time I left a movie like this genuinely scared, and checking over my shoulder. Expand
  10. Aug 29, 2010
    7
    This film will disappoint many because of the way it was advertised. It was promoted as a horror movie, but it is a bit more than that. It's a good mockumentary that manages to tell a compelling human story, while also having enough scary moments to satisfy people that aren't 15 years old expecting the 21st century version of The Exorcist.
  11. Aug 29, 2010
    8
    This was a very scary movie with a disappointing ending. I was terrified watching through the hand held camera through many of the scenes but the movie just ended abruptly. The last few minutes of the movie were just silly in my opinion. One critic on here said it right" this movie could have been great". I enjoyed most of it but was in shock when the credits rolled...
  12. Sep 1, 2010
    7
    very good acting creepy and dark parts the ending could have been a lot better. the end could of been so better they could have done a little more with nell at the end insted of the satanic group
  13. Oct 5, 2011
    10
    Amazing performance by all those involved. The movie was hilarious at times, horrific at other times, and made you think about the debate between religion and science. This movie fits in one of my favorites now.
  14. Jan 23, 2011
    9
    This film is very smart in the I-Phone kinda way. It is very progressive, addresses many different views about how people see the Christian church, and scares you in the process. If you're looking to see a horror film look somewhere else. If you want to see a good movie watch this!
  15. Nov 22, 2010
    8
    From the trailer, it seems as though it's one of those horror flicks that keep giving you a dose of horror every second from start to finish. Wasn't I wrong. The film is basically a documentary in which a renound reverend is visiting a small family in Ivanwood, Louisiana. Before you walk out of the theater, give the movie 20 minutes, it slowly becomes more entertaining. When visiting, heFrom the trailer, it seems as though it's one of those horror flicks that keep giving you a dose of horror every second from start to finish. Wasn't I wrong. The film is basically a documentary in which a renound reverend is visiting a small family in Ivanwood, Louisiana. Before you walk out of the theater, give the movie 20 minutes, it slowly becomes more entertaining. When visiting, he tries to force a demon out of her by performing an excorcism. Simple right? So after, the reverend leaves and that seems to be the end of it. But the exorcism didn't go as planned, especially with the reverend's exorcism expertise. A simple but entertaining plots and events start to unfold, which turns this movie directed by Eli Roth into an unusual but unique horror film. It might dissapoint some fans looking for true CGI demonic horror which can look fake at times, but definitely a movie that hinders classic and raw horror that should give some people a jump or two. Expand
  16. Feb 4, 2011
    7
    I thought this documentary style horror was put together relatively well. Nice cast and location. I feel that certain parts could have gone a little more in depth, while other spots could have been shortened and cut out. Overall though I would watch the movie again, but not by myself...not because I thought it was scary or anything lol, only because I like to get other peoples' vibes onI thought this documentary style horror was put together relatively well. Nice cast and location. I feel that certain parts could have gone a little more in depth, while other spots could have been shortened and cut out. Overall though I would watch the movie again, but not by myself...not because I thought it was scary or anything lol, only because I like to get other peoples' vibes on movies that have mixed reviews. I especially thought the ending was quite interesting. Expand
  17. Feb 3, 2011
    7
    Hm, ok, nice one, but pretty predictable. Acting is not so great, and maybe that is the main flaw of the movie. Its fine paced movie, but ending is a bit disappointing...i cannot give less then 7 points just because i waited it for so long so i can find dozen of things that i like, even if it will look forced:(
  18. Apr 6, 2012
    8
    I did enjoy this movie. It is different, but it worths the ride. However, I can see why some people do not like it; which paradoxically seems to be one of the reasons why I love it. The performances were great, and they created the right atmosphere. Great art direction and a good storyline. The Last Exorcism is gripping, intense, the suspense is permanent and I didn't want it to finish!.I did enjoy this movie. It is different, but it worths the ride. However, I can see why some people do not like it; which paradoxically seems to be one of the reasons why I love it. The performances were great, and they created the right atmosphere. Great art direction and a good storyline. The Last Exorcism is gripping, intense, the suspense is permanent and I didn't want it to finish!. It had great momentsand at times I felt afraid. I recommend it but I don't want to give away much...you have to experience it! Expand
  19. Jan 27, 2013
    7
    I have seen quite a few exorcism movies, most of them being trash, and this is probably the first legitly good exorcism based film I have seen. It's not scary or suspensful, It's just enjoyable.
  20. Jun 4, 2013
    10
    Really powerful and enjoyable, it has good scenes of possession, the 2nd best exorcism since "The Exorcist" it is smart and original, a scary PG-13 feast, the acting is great and intense, this is a true horror movie without tons of blood and sex, it is horror at its best
  21. Mar 3, 2013
    8
    Very smart, scary, original, and entertaining. Great performances from all the actors. So much better than the second one. It is without a doubt one of my most favorite horror movies ever.
  22. Oct 28, 2013
    7
    Good!! Scary and very suspenseful!!! It's not The Exorcist but it makes sense and it's a good movie to see with your friends!!! It's recommended from me!
  23. Aug 15, 2013
    9
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. I originally wrote this one off and didn't bother watching it when it came out because all "found footage" films are the same but this one was awesome. While I didn't find it scary, I found it really interesting and enthralling. The lead character, the fallen preacher who lost his faith and sees that all he once thought was bogus is real, was fantastic to watch. His performance carries the film and, when you add that to the interesting journey the preacher takes, you have a film that, despite not having any real scares, is pretty entertaining. Expand
  24. Apr 9, 2015
    7
    This was a pretty interesting take on the exorcism genre. I wouldn't say it's outright scary, but it's very creepy and interesting throughout, even if the pacing is a little slow. My only complaint is that the ending is feels rushed, but it's recommended if you like found footage or exorcism movies.
Metascore
63

Generally favorable reviews - based on 31 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 23 out of 31
  2. Negative: 1 out of 31
  1. 78
    The shock ending isn't all that shocking if you're a fan of genre films, but it's nonetheless effective despite the fact that it sidesteps several key questions. Never mind: It's hellishly fun.
  2. 63
    The Last Exorcism is one of those rare films where the marketing campaign is more interesting than the film it publicizes.
  3. 50
    The more hellish the story gets, the sillier and less involving the movie becomes.