The Horror Of The Exorcist

In 1973 the world did not know a lot about demonic possession and they had no idea about the history of possession and the church’s involvement in possession. By the time The Exorcist was done with its initial theatrical run it was one of the biggest movies of the year and destined to be an all time movie classic. The biggest thing to remember about The Exorcist is that the priest that originally inspired the story claims it is true.
In 1973 there was little talk of demonic possession and there was little concern about how the church looked at possession. There was a history of demonic possession but the general public was never given a reason to even give it a second thought. In 1973 director William Friedkin took a relatively unknown cast and put the topic of demonic possession on everyone’s mind and just scared the heck out of everyone with The Exorcist. One of the cast members that was relatively well known was Max Von Sydow who not only played one of the most famous priest roles in movie history but also was the central figure in one of the most famous movie posters of all time. Who can forget Sydow as Father Merrin standing outside the home of the possessed girl under the street lamp with the fog rolling by? Even the poster for the movie is terrifying. The Exorcist works on so many levels and offends so many groups that it is no wonder that it became so successful. It is considered a huge box office success but more than that the topic tackled by the movie won critical acclaim in so many ways and one of those ways was through Oscar nominations. The Exorcist was nominated for 10 Academy Awards including Best Supporting Actress in young star Linda Blair and best picture. In the end The Exorcist wound up winning the Academy Award for Best Sound and Best Screenplay but there was so much to love about this horrible movie.

The Exorcist is about a little girl named Regan, played by Linda Blair, who seems to have it all. Her mother is a successful actress who makes a great deal of money and little Regan has servants and lives in the richest part of Washington, DC while her mother makes a movie. But as time goes by Regan’s mother begins to notice physical and behavioral changes in Regan that begin to concern her. After a while she becomes convinced that her daughter is possessed by the devil. In the meantime there is a police inspector that is poking around Regan’s house as he is investigating a strange crime that he thinks involves Regan or her mother. Feeling like she is left without any alternatives Regan’s mother turns to the church and church psychiatrist Father Karras played by Jason Miller. Father Karras just lost his mother in a situation that caused him a great deal of guilt and this plays later in the movie. The rest of the movie is about removing the demon from Regan and it is pretty terrifying.

The Exorcist is always voted one of the top horror movies of all time and Linda Blair is always remembered for her work in the role of Regan. The debate sparked by The Exorcist still rages today and demonic possession movies are made on a regular basis as the public cannot seem to get enough of people possessed by demons. There are a lot of stories about the making of The Exorcist but probably one of the biggest stories about The Exorcist is that the priest that the movie is based on claims that everything in the movie actually happened. If you have ever seen The Exorcist then you will have to agree that the notion that it is true is very scary.
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