First and foremost, this movie was awesome. I loved most every minute of it and the back half with Anthony Hopkins may be some of his best since Silence of the Lambs.
The Rite tells the story of Michael Kovak as he journeys to find himself and his faith. After running away to monastery school just to escape his father and their mortuary, he finds himself at the end of his four years wanting out. After an accident forces him to give a lady her last rites before dying, his teacher decides he could make an excellent exorcist. He tells him to spend two months at the Vatican and if it does nothing, he will gladly pass along his wishes to leave. After questioning the practice and it's faith, his new teacher sends him to Father Lucas (Hopkins) who has been doing exorcisms for a very long time. Pretty soon events start lining up, people start being possessed and Michael must seemingly help Father Lucas from the same demons he has fought for decades.
The story itself isn't the most original. Most exorcism movies tend to be the same and a crisis of faith has been the premise of far more films than Sam Jackson has even been in. It's very much a "presentation" movie and it was great. Colin O'Donoghue was pretty good as Kovak, especially considering that he was sharing with Hopkins, who was amazing as always. I found the movie to have plenty of chilling moments with the "end" scene between Hopkins and O'Donoghue giving me goosebumps the whole scene. You will not come out of this movie with a new experience and you will not see things that you have not seen before but did that stop us with 22 James Bond movies? The performances were great. The presentation was great. This movie was great. It won't be every one's type of movie, but if you're willing to see this movie, you should.