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Thursday, August 19, 2004

The Exorcist

With the upcoming release of “Exorcist: The Beginning”, I thought it fitting to post my thoughts on the original, which after 30 years is an undeniable horror classic. “The Exorcist” is a shocking tale of a diabolical demon possession. This movie is based on the novel by William Peter Blatty, which spent 55 weeks on the New York Times Bestseller list. The book is an excellent read and most definitely one to be read with all the lights on! Recently we purchased the audio book version read by the author himself. It is a most chilling experience to hear Blatty’s expressions and intonations as he reads the words to his novel.

The movie was a fantastic screenplay rendition of his novel released in the USA on December 26, 1973. Capturing the elements of the demon possession with frightening clarity for its time. The film begins when Father Merrin, while on an archeological dig, encounters an ancient evil that warns of an upcoming battle. Cut to a suburb of Washington where a girl named Regan MacNeil (played by Linda Blair) starts out as a normal 12 year old. When she begins talking to her mother about her imaginary friend Captain Howdy, things get a little strange.

Supernatural occurrences like the classic bump in the attic began to disturb the mother as she sees Reagan’s health deteriorating. Medical exam after exam fail to show any cause her state of illness. The suggestion of an exorcism takes root in the mother’s mind and eventually she contacts the church. Enter Father Damien Karras, a priest who just happens to be going through a religious crisis himself, questioning his true beliefs. What ensues is a battle of Good vs. Evil to free Reagan’s soul from the devil’s grasp. Can Father Karras exorcise the demon? Maybe, with a little help from senior clergyman, Father Merrin.

The special effects are pretty good for the time. The now classic head spin and the green puke spew were spectacular in 1973. When this film was released it met with high criticism and negative audience consequences that included fainting, vomiting, and even a rumored miscarriage due to the violent content. Banned for video release in the UK and other countries for many years, this film has now found cult status among horror fans the world over.

The movie garnered a Golden Globe award for best picture and racked up 10 Oscar nominations of which it won 2 (Best Sound) & (Best Writing/Screenplay). “The Exorcist” grossed millions at the box office and was second only to “The Godfather” for most of the 70s. To date, it is the 13th highest grossing movie of all time.

Rent the original tonight and get ready for the theatrical release of the new prequel movie on Friday!

  • Today's Cure song is "Let's Go To Bed" from the Japanese Whispers CD - (1985) According to Robert Smith, this is "a nonsense set of words to complement what I then considered to be a hideous piece of 'commercial' pap ... but it grew on me...!!!" Another song I consider to be classic Cure.
"But I don't care if you don't, and I don't feel if you don't. I don't want it if you don't, and I won't say it if you won't say it first."



Blogger nicole said...

This movie still scares the tar out of me! I don't know that I will be able to see the new movie!!! Let us know how it compares to the old one.

Thursday, August 19, 2004 1:08:00 PM  
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