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Saturday, July 26, 2014 
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Cinematronic by Michael Snyder
Film
cinematronic
  Exorcist: The Beginning cinematronic
  director

Renny Harlin

cast

Stellan Skarsgård, Izabella Scorupco, James D'Arcy, Remy Sweeney, Julian Wadham, Andrew French, Ralph Brown, Ben Cross, David Bradley, Alan Ford

year

2004

rating rating cinematronic
  Could the redundant horror-movie prequel "Exorcist: The Beginning" have been cursed by dark forces? Unlikely, although that would make sense in light of the satanic themes the film shares with its chilling progenitor "The Exorcist" and the substandard sequels "Exorcist II: The Heretic" and "The Exorcist III." Maybe it made business sense to produce a name-brand movie about the earliest trials of exorcist Father Merrin. But "The Beginning," set in Africa after World War II, just rehashes more effective frights that were intelligently, legitimately earned by "The Exorcist." Speaking of ludicrous history, "The Beginning" is actually two movies. Director Paul Schrader's original was, for vague reasons, blocked from theatrical release by the studio, making way for hack Renny Harlin's take to be dumped in theaters. Harlin's version is pretty God-awful, yet not as hilariously bad as noble, miscast Richard Burton bellowing at the demon Pazuzu in "The Heretic." Meticulous actor Stellan Skarsgård ("Insomnia"), as the younger Merrin, and ex-Bond girl Izabella Scorupco ("Goldeneye"), as a dedicated doctor tending to a blighted African village, will be hard-pressed to escape from "The Beginning" with careers unsullied. As for "head-spinning" special effects, the computer animation here is strictly 'toon-town. Such a shortfall in an era of high-tech advances is the most disturbing thing about "The Beginning."  
cinematronic
cinematronic


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