Products featured in this Yahoo article are selected by our shopping writers. We will earn a commission from purchases made via links in this article. Pricing and availability are subject to change.

The Exorcist: Believer: How to watch horror sequel online

50 years after The Exorcist terrified audiences around the world, Pazuzu rises again

Angela (Lidya Jewett) and Katherine (Olivia Marcum) in The Exorcist: Believer (Universal Pictures)
Angela (Lidya Jewett) and Katherine (Olivia Marcum) in The Exorcist: Believer (Universal Pictures)

A new instalment in The Exorcist horror franchise entitled The Exorcist: Believer has is available to stream online now, after its release in cinemas in October.

Long hailed as one of the greatest films of all time, The Exorcist shocked the world and pushed the limits of horror when it was unleashed on unsuspecting audiences back in 1973.

The first of its genre to be nominated for Best Picture at the Academy Awards, William Friedkin’s controversial classic — adapted from William Peter Blatty’s 1971 novel of the same name — has since garnered a massive following, cementing itself as a staple of pop culture to this day.

Read more: How making The Exorcist was scarier than the movie itself

Fast forward to now, where nearly 50 years have passed since it first traumatised audiences with its terrifying plot and nauseating set-pieces.

Despite The Exorcist’s sequels flattering to deceive, the horror franchise is being revisited as a retroactive threequel by Blumhouse and David Gordon Green that takes place after the original.

Here’s everything you need to know about The Exorcist: Believer...

How to watch The Exorcist: Believer

(from left) Chris MacNeil (Ellen Burstyn) and Victor Fielding (Leslie Odom, Jr.) in The Exorcist: Believer, directed by David Gordon Green. (Universal Pictures)
Chris MacNeil (Ellen Burstyn) and Victor Fielding (Leslie Odom, Jr.) in The Exorcist: Believer, directed by David Gordon Green. (Universal Pictures)

Watch The Exorcist: Believer now

The first entry in Green’s Exorcist trilogy was released in UK cinemas on Friday, 6 October. It is now available to rent or buy Prime Video and Apple TV+, whilst the film is still being screened in some cinemas.

The DVD and Blu-Ray are available to pre-order ahead of their release on 31 March, 2024.

The movie has a runtime of 111 minutes and is rated 15 for "strong horror, violence, injury detail, very strong language" according to the BBFC.

As it stands, no details have been confirmed for the second and third films’ respective release dates at the moment.

The Exorcist: Believer reviews

The Exorcist: Believer (Universal)
The poster for The Exorcist: Believer (Universal)

The Exorcist: Believer has infiltrated cinemas and digital. The question now is... will you feel compelled to watch it? Well, based on the first batch of reviews to hit the internet, this demonic re-possession tale may be more hellish than heaven-sent.

Starting with our own review, critic Roxy Simons found the franchise's latest sequel to be struggling with two major issues. "The problem is that the film just isn't all that exciting, or very scary," she explained.

The Independent addressed the elephant in the room, saying the movie "lives deep in the shadows of the late William Friedkin’s 1973 classic" yet ultimately only achieves "a toned-down, more limply palatable iteration of Friedkin’s work."

The Telegraph didn't mince words either, saying flat out that it's "not even slightly scary," with The Guardian emerging equally unimpressed, suggesting "it’s serviceable," and calling it "a silly, gloopy Halloween shocker that offers just about enough goofy entertainment for an undemanding fright night crowd."

Read our full review round-up below:

Yahoo Movies UK: Horror sequel won't possess your attention for long (3-min read)

The Independent: Boring, self-serious and parched from a lack of scares (3-min read)

The Telegraph: Even Satan seems asleep on the job in this desperate sequel (3-min read)

The Guardian: Ellen Burstyn returns for schlocky sequel (4-min read)

Total Film: "An overcooked valentine to a horror classic" (2-min read)

The Exorcist: Believer trailer

The first trailer for The Exorcist: Believer was released online in July 2023. Featuring the distinctive refrain of Mike Oldfield's Tubular Bells, it gave us our first look at the return of Ellen Burstyn as Chris MacNeil.

Watch it below.

Trailer two offers more of the same, this time taking us deeper inside the drama of a dual possession that is impacting two young girls and their family members.

With original movie character Reegan (Linda Blair) getting a mention, the movie looks set to hark back to familiar terrors in order to tell an all-new scary story.

The Exorcist: Believer director

Director David Gordon Green on the set of The Exorcist: Believer. (Universal Pictures)
Director David Gordon Green on the set of The Exorcist: Believer. (Universal Pictures)

David Gordon Green, who had already rebooted another iconic horror series with his successful Halloween trilogy, was attached to direct the first film since December 2020.

Eastbound and Down’s Danny McBride — who co-wrote Green’s Halloween films — is also reuniting with the director who began filming the reboot at the tail end of last year.

Staunch sceptics may be aghast at the idea of another “remake” of such a seminal movie, but Green can point to the praise bestowed upon his modern-day Halloween series as proof that he can deliver another great homage to a timeless masterpiece.

Read more: The most exciting movies of 2023

However, according to the film’s cinematographer Michael Simmonds, we should expect a vastly different vibe from Green and co. with the new Exorcist movies.

While Green’s Halloween trilogy was largely faithful to John Carpenter’s groundbreaking 1978 slasher, each film was full of nostalgic callbacks and soap opera sensibilities. Simmonds told SyFy the new Exorcist will be “more suspenseful, claustrophobic, and true to the original material”.

Swedish actor Max von Sydow, American actresses Linda Blair and Louise Fletcher on the set of Exorcist II: The Heretic, directed by John Boorman. (Photo by Warner Bros. Pictures/Sunset Boulevard/Corbis via Getty Images)
Max von Sydow, Linda Blair and Louise Fletcher on the set of Exorcist II: The Heretic, directed by John Boorman. (Getty Images)

Unlike Carpenter though, who was involved in scoring the Halloween threequel, original Exorcist director Friedkin dispelled any rumours that he would be working on the new sequels.

Talking to Yahoo about the reboot, producer Jason Blum told us: "We’re gonna surprise everyone with The Exorcist. I know there are a lot of sceptics out there, a lot of people who think this is sacred ground that we should not be treading on. But my job is to prove them wrong and I am confident. We have a terrific script."

The Exorcist: Believer plot

The Exorcist Ellen Burstyn and Linda Blair 1973. (Photo by Screen Archives/Getty Images)
Ellen Burstyn and Linda Blair in 1973's The Exorcist. (Screen Archives/Getty Images)

Green intends on following up on the original’s story, which centred around a single parent’s efforts to save her possessed daughter Regan through a brutal exorcism performed by a pair of world-weary priests.

Furthermore, it seems that Green will consider the original Exorcist’s many sequels as canon, noting that “they can all fall into the acceptable mythology” for what he’s doing.

Despite his own Halloween projects completely disregarding everything that followed the 1978 original, Green reckons that the largely derided follow-ups to Friedkin’s magnum opus — including the two-season TV series that was first aired in 2016 — only extend and enhance his vision for the franchise.

The Exorcist: Believer (Universal)
A poster for The Exorcist: Believer (Universal)

During the CinemaCon expo in Las Vegas in April 2023, attendees were treated to an early trailer and some additional plot details.

The synopsis reveals: "Since the death of his pregnant wife in a Haitian earthquake 12 years ago, Victor Fielding (Tony winner and Oscar nominee Leslie Odom, Jr.; One Night in Miami, Hamilton) has raised their daughter, Angela (Lidya Jewett, Good Girls) on his own.

"But when Angela and her friend Katherine (newcomer Olivia Marcum), disappear in the woods, only to return three days later with no memory of what happened to them, it unleashes a chain of events that will force Victor to confront the nadir of evil and, in his terror and desperation, seek out the only person alive who has witnessed anything like it before: Chris MacNeil."

The Exorcist: Believer cast

BEVERLY HILLS, CA - OCTOBER 22: Ellen Burstyn arrives at the Academy's 45th Anniversary Screening Of
Ellen Burstyn arrives at the Academy's 45th Anniversary Screening Of The Exorcist, 2018. (Morgan Lieberman/Getty Images)

Green’s plan became evident when it was confirmed that Ellen Burstyn — who played tormented mother Chris MacNeil in the original — will reprise her role in Believer. It seems Burstyn’s Chris holds the key to Leslie Odom Jr.’s (One Night in Miami) character’s quest to rescue his own child from a malevolent spirit.

Read more: Prosthetic makeup that put actors through hell

Alongside Burstyn and Odom Jr., Lidya Jewett and Olivia Marcum will star as the film's possessed tweens, with Ann Dowd (Hereditary) joining as Paula, a nurse who is concerned about the duo's behaviour. The foul-mouthed demon Pazuzu will make his return five decades after taking over Regan to shocking effect.

During the clip a clip seen at CinemaCon, attendees witnessed moments including the possessed girls staring dead-eyed into a mirror for long stretches of time and one particularly chilling sequence in which Marcum's character bursts into a church service and yells "The body and the blood" to a priest in Pazuzu's booming, demonic voice.

The Exorcist: Believer is available to rent or buy on digital now.