July 18, 2015

VOD Review: Exter (2015)

Before we get into this review of Marcus Nispel's latest Horror venture, let us say that we were fans of both his Texas Chainsaw Massacre and Friday the 13th remakes. TCM 2003 was way better than most people give it credit for, and as for the F13th remake, well it was a Jason movie, and it's not even close to being the worst entry in that series.

Pathfinder and Conan weren't anything great, but if nothing else, they proved that the guy has a sharp eye for visuals, and that his movies at least tend to be slick and stylish. He's a music video director though, so that's to be expected.

The Asylum/Backmask/Exeter (call it what you will) is another stylish, visually-pleasing effort from Nispel, that like his other feature films, lacks depth. Even worse though is the fact that this one is far more confused and less focused that his previous efforts.

Here there be huge spoilers, so beware.

The movie opens up with a nearly naked hot chick walking over to her bed, kneeling down, and blowing her brains out, which was Marcus Nispel shamelessly ripping-off the "hole in the head" scene from his 2003 TCM remake. After that colossal waste of perfect tits, we're then treated to an old-timey montage of footage of the Exeter School for the Mongoloidal, where dozens of mentally-challenged and deranged kids were abused and killed before it was eventually shut down for human rights violations in the 70's. The footage is also kind enough to point out that the halls of Exeter are now haunted by the ghosts of the feeble-minded kids who died there. Of course.

Flash forward to present day, where Father Conway is renovating the old school for some reason. When the friends of his favorite altar boy, Patrick, decide to throw a party at the dilapidated school, you just know that nothing good is going to come of it.... which leads us to a group of dimwits trying to levitate a 14-year-old Jason Mewes look-a-like with the power of their minds... which leads to the angry spirits of Exeter awakening... which leads to the kid being possessed... which leads to everybody dying.

From here on out, everyone gets possessed and tries to kill each other, which leads to a twist ending that you could see coming from the very beginning of the movie. Honestly, one of the characters all but says "I'm here to kill you all" about 10 minutes into this one. What are you gonna do?

Exeter didn't really do much for us, but that's not to say that the movie is without merit. The movie excels visually, especially when its gorier scenes come around. As we said above, Marcus Nispel definitely has a sharp eye for visual storytelling. And even though the characters were all annoying as hell, the actors did a fairly good job with them, especially Brittany Curran.

Most of the scares that the movie went for may not have worked all that well for us, but the part where they were hiding in the wardrobe was pretty good, as was the following fight and death scene. Though flawed, Exeter definitely had its moments.

Overall, we found Exeter to be pretty haphazard and ridiculous.

For instance, when the little brother becomes possessed, the other kids tie him to an old bed and decide that "He needs an exorcism, man!" So instead of leaving or calling the Cops, they just stand around like idiots. Then, when a dude with a shotgun shows up and blows his own face off, only two of them take off, which leads to them jumping in a car and driving off down the road at a pretty good clip. During their harrowing escape though, they they hit someone standing right in front of the school, which confused us. Did they park half a mile away, run to the car, and then drive back by the school at break-neck speed? I don't know if it was an error in editing or what, but it was all confused and sloppy.

So there they all are, with a possessed 14-year-old kid tied to a bed, a dead guy laying on the floor with no face, and a guy embedded in their windshield, and still no one calls the Cops. No, instead of doing that, one of the geniuses comes up with the idea to dismember the bodies, take out their teeth, melt them down with acid, use blenders to liquefy the remains, put them in jam jars, and then throw the jars in various dumpsters around town.

Jam jars.

There is no sense at all to be had in this movie.

And did we mention that almost all of the characters were idiots, and that we couldn't wait to see them die painfully?

Exeter really was full of stupid, silly shit.

  • So there's an App that helps the average person to perform exorcisms? Sounds legit. 
  • Dipping a Priest's finger in normal water somehow makes it holy. 
  • When people become possessed, they crave Cheez-Whiz
  • When kids in movies throw parties, hundreds of people show up, and they're all attractive. 
  • Deserted buildings in the middle of nowhere have great wireless signals. 
  • Seriously, how are they getting signals on their phones and laptops? And who even brings a laptop to a party in an abandoned school anyway? 
  • And why with all of this horrible shit happening around them, are they repeatedly Goolging shit, instead of running for their lives or calling for help? They even carve a Ouija Board into the floor to look to the spirit world for help? Come on!!!!!

Faces blown off, tongues ripped out, tooth brushes in eyes, a reenactment of the lawnmower scene from Dead Alive... this movie has got some great gory moments throughout.

Aside from a little bit of nudity at the beginning, this one is virtually skin-free.

Priests are always up to no good. Also, Marcus Nispel could really direct the hell out of a movie with a good script. Maybe someday he'll get the chance.

If you can look past the mass amount of stupidity that makes up much of Exeter, then you'll probably dig it for it's bloody visuals and crazy action. For us, it was a chore just making it through this one without fast-forwarding. Different strokes, you know?


Exeter is available now on DirecTV, and will be in limited theatrical release on August 14th.

Brittany Curran and Gage Golightly are in this.


  1. I love your reviews so I mean this with all respect - I'm not sure you got what they were going for. I believe that everything you mentioned was intentional. All of the characters suck, the app for an exorcism, the stupid ass decisions made, all of the stuff that happens I believe you are supposed to have that reaction and therefore I enjoyed the movie quite a bit. It's smarter than you think and I believe it's playing with the audience in that way. I think it's a full on parody. I could be wrong of course.

  2. I agree, Chay, that a lot of what went on in the movie was probably inentional, it just didn't work for us. I don't think that it was at all meant to be a parody though.

    I also agree that lots of people are going to like this one, we just aren't those people. It happens :)

    As long as you enjoyed it, that's what really matters.

    1. Right on, J.S. Keep up the great work. I rarely ever comment, but this site has become a "must check" for me and is amazingly well done.

  3. This movie was good but not for everyone