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The Exorcist III (1990)

A police lieutenant uncovers more than he bargained for as his investigation of a series of murders, which have all the hallmarks of the deceased 'Gemini' serial killer, lead him to question the patients of a psychiatric ward.


(screenplay), (novel)

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2 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »
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William Peter Blatty's director's cut of "The Exorcist III" which was thought to be lost. Recovered and released in 2016 under its original title, this is the definitive cut of the film based on his novel "Legion"

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Cast overview, first billed only:
Stedman (as George Dicenzo)
Lee Richardson ...
Mary Jackson ...
Tracy Thorne ...


Lt. Kinderman and Father Dyer cheer each other up on the anniversary of the death of their mutual friend, Father Damien Karras, by going to see "It's a Wonderful Life" at the local theater in Georgetown, near Washington D.C. But there's no cheering Kinderman while a particularly cruel and gruesome serial killer is at large. His murders, which involve torture, decapitation and the desecration of religious icons, is bad enough; but they also resemble those of the Gemini Killer, who has been dead for fifteen years. Written by J. Spurlin

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Do you dare walk these steps again? See more »


Drama | Horror | Mystery


R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

17 August 1990 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Exorcist III: Legion  »

Box Office


$26,098,824 (USA)

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| (director's cut)

Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


William Peter Blatty had hoped to recover the deleted footage from the Morgan Creek vaults, so that he might re-assemble the original cut of the film, which he said was "rather different" from what was released. Unfortunately for Blatty, and for the fans, who had been clamoring for such a release, the footage was never found. On June 28, 2007, Blatty's wife sent the following comment to a fan site: "My husband tells me that it is Morgan Creek's claim that they have lost all the footage, including an alternate opening scene in which Kinderman views the body of Karras in the morgue, right after his fall down the steps. What a shame." See more »


When "Nurse X" hits the police officer, we can see a cable hooked to him when he flies back against the wall. See more »


Kinderman: My wife's mother is visiting, Father. And Tuesday night, she's cooking us a carp. It's a tasty fish, I've got nothing against it. But, because it's supposedly filled with impurities, she buys it live and for three days, it's been swimming... up and down... in my bathtub. Up and down... and I hate it. I can't stand the sight of it, moving its gills. Now, you're standing very close to me, Father; have you noticed? Yes. I haven't had a bath for three days. I can't go home until the carp is asleep ...
See more »


Referenced in Midnight Movie Review: The Exorcist III (2011) See more »


Liturgical Chant
Performed by Burleigh Seaver
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

I was expecting a movie I could fall to sleep to... So much the opposite
27 October 2008 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

I am one of the many Americans who has gained weight over the years. I'm not fat, just a bit chubby. In an effort to correct this, I have been walking more. Every morning, rain or shine, before sunrise, I take a mile-long walk. The only time I miss it is when I'm sick. I've been doing this consistently for about a year.

The morning after I watched this movie, I did not go on my walk. Instead, I was curled up on the couch, watching crappy family sitcoms, just trying to get the chill off my spine.

When I first purchased this movie, I, like so many others, thought I was buying the original The Exorcist. I had never seen it before, so I did not know what the cover should look like, and I missed the little 'III' in the 'O.' So when I got home, I discovered my blunder. I had never even heard of this movie. I had never even heard of the Exorcist II! Naturally, I was expecting it to suck. You know... 'If I've never even heard of it, it can't be very big, and if it was good, it'd be big.' And then I watched it. There was not a single moment where I was not enveloped in suspense. The nurse's station scene is a MASTERPIECE. Period. Not only did it scare me more than any other scene in any other movie I have ever watched, but it was just so finely crafted. The camera never moves. It's like it's just edging you on, warning you that something huge is going to happen. And, if you're anything like me, your eyes start playing tricks on you. Because it was so still, I kept looking for things that were moving, and I kept thinking the door was opening slightly, or that something was twitching. Every time she left the screen, I held my breath, and every time she returned, I sighed in relief. Then, when she returned for her last time... well, I swear I would have screamed if I wasn't petrified into stillness.

And the astonishing thing is, they manage to pull all of this off with very little gore! This is not a slasher horror. It is a psychological thriller. If you watch it and are not terrified, in my estimation, you are simply not attentive enough to get it.

I have not seen the original so I cannot compare the two, but I can say that this movie scared me more than any other movie I have ever watched. Period.

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