A “found footage” piece of cinema verite that’s actually more of a fascinating character study than a horror film, The Last Exorcism follows Reverend Cotton Marcus, a small-town preacher and professional showman who has everyone believing that his carefully orchestrated sound and light shows actually cast the Devil himself out of supposedly possessed people. Tired of the dog and pony act, Marcus hires a documentary film crew to expose him as a charlatan by chronicling his tell-all final gig — which, of course, ends up involving a young woman who’s chock full of demons for real. Director Daniel Stamm’s examination of a career trickster suddenly called upon to actually be a mean, motherfu**in’ servant of God is engrossing, unsettling and rather satisfying, that is, until the final ten minutes, where everything goes straight down the toilet into absurdity and confusion; unfortunately, the ending was awful enough to make many viewers dismiss the entire film, resulting in The Last Exorcism being cast out of theaters by bad word of mouth. Just remember everything that came before the final bit of nonsense and you should stay a true believer in this creepy little parable which, if nothing else, features terrific performances by Patrick Fabian and Ashley Bell.
Discuss on Facebook