Theatre

Sunday Mirror (Northern Ireland) - - Going Out - DEIRDRE O’BRIEN

The Ex­or­cist

Phoenix Theatre, Lon­don “That thing up­stairs isn’t my daugh­ter!” is just one of the fa­mous lines from the iconic 1973 film.

Fans will be pleased to hear it, along with other more X-rated ones, in this new take on the ter­ri­fy­ing tale. But be warned – it’s not for those of a ner­vous dis­po­si­tion. We are in the new home of movie star Chris (Jenny Sea­grove) and her an­gelic 12-year-old daugh­ter Re­gan.

But the mop­pet makes a new pal – a de­mon mag­nif­i­cently voiced by Sir Ian McKellen, who savours ev­ery sec­ond as he goes from purring in­gra­ti­a­tion to satanic sav­agery. Re­gan’s de­scent into pos­ses­sion – lead­ing Chris to call the James Bond of ex­or­cists (Peter Bowles) – in­cludes the movie’s pro­jec­tile vom­it­ing, shock­ing ob­scen­ity and head-swiv­el­ling.

It makes for a camp but skil­fully staged show which serves up grue­some with dev­il­ish rel­ish.

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