As we touched upon yesterday, William Friedkin’s THE EXORCIST is a great movie, a horror classic, the godfather of “elevated horror,” beloved by horror fans and non horror fans alike, making it a smash hit, box office record breaker, and cultural phenomenon. It was the first horror movie ever nominated for best picture, and received 10 Oscar nominations total, winning for adapted screenplay and sound. It caused mass freakouts and faintings and many still believe it’s the scariest film of all time. Its success launched an entire genre of demonic possession movies, pretty much all of which just rehash the last act but without a fraction of the directorial flair, and those movies still do well.
For all of these reasons, many people really weren’t (and still aren’t) open to the idea of somebody else making a sequel to THE EXORCIST. When EXORCIST II: THE HERETIC came along four years later, numerous major critics, even some of the ones who disliked the first one, called the sequel ludicrous, preposterous, incomprehensible, unjustifiable, the worst or stupidest movie ever made. And the late great Friedkin, who wanted no part in a sequel for both artistic and legal reasons, deemed the half hour of it he saw “a stupid mess made by a dumb guy… Scurrilous. A horrible picture” and “the worst piece of crap I’ve ever seen… a freaking disgrace… made by a demented mind.” (read the rest of this shit…)