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The Rite Reviews

Nigel Floyd
Time Out
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This is a dreary metaphysical drama dressed in the vestments of a religious horror movie.

Full Review Source: Time Out | Original Score: 2/5

February 23, 2011
Stephen Whitty
Newark Star-Ledger
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Oooh. Scary.

Full Review Source: Newark Star-Ledger | Original Score: 2/4

January 29, 2011
Peter Travers
Rolling Stone
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The Rite goes wrong in every way.

Full Review Source: Rolling Stone | Original Score: 1/4

January 28, 2011
Liam Lacey
Globe and Mail
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Starts glumly before flipping into supernatural camp.

Full Review Source: Globe and Mail | Original Score: 1.5/4

January 28, 2011
Lou Lumenick
New York Post
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Despite an impressive cast (excluding the excruciatingly dull O'Donoghue, a newcomer from Ireland), "The Rite" is the sort of misfire that Hollywood has long buried in January.

Full Review Source: New York Post | Original Score: 1/4

January 28, 2011
Sean O'Connell
Washington Post
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A run-of-the-mill chiller that spends an inordinate amount of time flirting with unconventional scare tactics before sacrificing all of its ingenuity to become the latest in a long line of "The Exorcist" clones.

Full Review Source: Washington Post | Original Score: 0.5/4

January 28, 2011
Richard Corliss
TIME Magazine
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The Rite is all windup, weak delivery.

Full Review Source: TIME Magazine

January 28, 2011
Ian Buckwalter
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There may be redemption in store for some of his characters, but Hafstrom has some serious work ahead of him if he wants any kind of absolution after this wreck.

Full Review Source: NPR | Original Score: 1.5/10

January 27, 2011
Stephen Holden
New York Times
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Is it the devil's work or a psychiatric disorder? That is the spurious debate that sputters along in this dull, pretentiously verbose movie that (need it be said?) enthusiastically takes the devil's side.

Full Review Source: New York Times | Original Score: 2/5

January 27, 2011
James Berardinelli
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There are some interesting ideas and themes in The Rite; unfortunately, an uneven tone and a disappointingly generic climax dilute them.

Full Review Source: ReelViews | Original Score: 2.5/4

January 27, 2011
Scott Bowles
USA Today
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There's nothing wrong with The Rite that spinning heads and a little pea soup wouldn't cure.

Full Review Source: USA Today | Original Score: 2/4

January 27, 2011
Andrea Gronvall
Chicago Reader
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Horror fans may be disappointed by this handsome exorcism drama, which aspires to the serious religious feeling of William Friedkin's The Exorcist but delivers little of its shock or gore.

Full Review Source: Chicago Reader

January 27, 2011
Amy Biancolli
Houston Chronicle
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Sure, there are clichés (why must possessed characters talk like Darth Vader in a bathtub?), but the film avoids the schlockier pitfalls of outright Exorcist wannabes.

Full Review Source: Houston Chronicle | Original Score: 3/4

January 27, 2011
Kevin C. Johnson
St. Louis Post-Dispatch
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This is an exorcism movie that those who actually saw The Exorcist in theaters can get into.

Full Review Source: St. Louis Post-Dispatch | Original Score: 2.5/4

January 27, 2011
Glenn Kenny
MSN Movies
Top Critic IconTop Critic fails most crucially in pulling its strings together in a way that's not nearly as impressive as it's straining to be.

Full Review Source: MSN Movies | Original Score: 2/5

January 27, 2011
Joe Morgenstern
Wall Street Journal
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Dave Whitehead's sound design fills the production with ominous whooshings that sometimes overwhelm the dialogue, not that the dialogue doesn't deserve it.

Full Review Source: Wall Street Journal

January 27, 2011
Andrew O'Hehir
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If it's a nonsensical patchwork quilt, it's mostly a watchable one, with supporting performances from Ciarán Hinds and Rutger Hauer (which is a lot of long, gloomy faces for one movie).

Full Review Source:

January 27, 2011
Tom Horgen
Minneapolis Star Tribune
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A horror film that goes nowhere very, very slowly.

Full Review Source: Minneapolis Star Tribune | Original Score: 1.5/4

January 27, 2011
Tom Keogh
Seattle Times
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Perhaps one day, someone will adapt "The Rite" for two actors on stage, minus token effects, and really dig into the dynamics between its two leads. That would be something to see.

Full Review Source: Seattle Times | Original Score: 2/4

January 27, 2011
Steven Rea
Philadelphia Inquirer
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As Hopkins himself goes wild-eyed and FX-ed with popping veins, The Rite gives up on asking us to take it seriously.

Full Review Source: Philadelphia Inquirer | Original Score: 2.5/4

January 27, 2011
Ty Burr
Boston Globe
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So many skilled scenery chewers in supporting roles, and they still can't make up for the void in the center that is O'Donoghue.

Full Review Source: Boston Globe | Original Score: 1.5/4

January 27, 2011
Keith Phipps
AV Club
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You know what isn't terrifying? Mules. Also not terrifying: mules with red eyes and baleful expressions.

Full Review Source: AV Club | Original Score: C-

January 27, 2011
Michael Phillips
Chicago Tribune
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For an hour "The Rite," as scripted by Michael Petroni, delivers the expected, but with panache... The supporting cast is unusually strong...

Full Review Source: Chicago Tribune | Original Score: 2.5/4

January 27, 2011
Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times
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I found myself drawn in. It is sincere. It is not exploitative; a certain amount of screaming, frothing and thrashing comes with the territory.

Full Review Source: Chicago Sun-Times | Original Score: 3/4

January 27, 2011
Christy Lemire
Associated Press
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Anthony Hopkins classes up The Rite, as you can imagine he would most every situation. But even his otherworldly powers can only make this overly familiar demonic possession thriller engaging for so long.

Full Review Source: Associated Press

January 26, 2011
Owen Gleiberman
Entertainment Weekly
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The Rite commits the supreme sin of making the devil dull.

Full Review Source: Entertainment Weekly | Original Score: D

January 26, 2011
Bill Goodykoontz
Arizona Republic
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Hafstrom creates a nice, creepy vibe, especially for the first part of the movie, which has a menacing atmosphere.

Full Review Source: Arizona Republic | Original Score: 3/5

January 26, 2011
Roger Moore
Orlando Sentinel
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O'Donoghue is so stunningly uncharismatic that he kills whatever possibilities this picture from the director of the silly-scary-smart "1408″ had.

Full Review Source: Orlando Sentinel | Original Score: 2/4

January 26, 2011
Joshua Rothkopf
Time Out New York
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You wait, bored, with demons crawling up your ass, for the good stuff to start.

Full Review Source: Time Out New York | Original Score: 1/5

January 26, 2011
Frank Scheck
Hollywood Reporter
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The Rite becomes more ludicrous as it goes along, with more than a few lines of dialogue from Michael Petroni's over-the-top screenplay eliciting unintended titters.

Full Review Source: Hollywood Reporter

January 25, 2011
Joe Leydon
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A largely low-key, intelligent effort.

Full Review Source: Variety

January 25, 2011
Nick Pinkerton
Village Voice
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Director Mikael Håfström's foot-dragging pace makes a pretense of intent character study, but Michael's spiritual trials are occluded by Michael Petroni's patchy screenplay.

Full Review Source: Village Voice

January 25, 2011
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