Friday, 16 December 2011

Review on The Exorcist

Review on The Exorcist (1973)

The Exorcist

This film; The Exorcist written by William Peter Blatty had based it on true events which John J. Puccio expresses in a review. 'William Peter Blatty based the screenplay on his own best-selling novel, which in turn found inspiration from a newspaper article about a real-life exorcism. Under the direction of William Friedkin, the movie account of young Regan's demonic possession is probably a lot scarier than the actual experience, as it should be in a work of largely imaginative fiction. But it's that element of "what if" that makes the movie all the more plausible, and , therefore, all the more alarming.' (Puccio, 2010) Despite basing the film on true events it also caused many problems and uproars including offence to religious groups as they tried to get the film banned as David Keyes explains. 'But "The Exorcist" had all the right intentions. Its story, characters, conception, and vision were all uniquely concepted, and in 1973, it scared the hell out of everyone. There were reports of suicide, child miscarriages, sacrilege, and religious persecution which all developed from the audiences who saw the movie. In places over on the eastern United States, the movie was rated "X" and in many other places, no one under 18 years of age was allowed into it. Religious groups slammed it for being "religiously degrading," and some even fought to have it removed from theaters.' (Keyes, 1998)


Although in Britain the film had trouble even getting a video age rating and was unable to be purchased or even rented, which is mentioned by Andrew Collins on 'However, in a surreal twists of events, the British Board Of Film Censors still refused to grant the film a video certificate. The then BBFC boss James Ferman said, "The problem with The Exorcist is not that it's a bad film, it's that it's a very good film - one of the most powerful ever made." Thus, in 1998, despite this sense that The Exorcist was back in the public domain, you still could not rent or buy it in this country. In effect, one of the most powerful films ever made was rendered even more powerful. Like Clockwork Orange (1971), The Evil Dead (1982) and The Beach Boys' Surf's Up album, The Exorcist attained the mythic power of unattainability. Then, in 1999, the spell was broken. The BBFC woke up, smelt the coffee, and finally saw fit to grant The Exorcist its requisite 18. Out it came on video, laserdisc and DVD.' (Collins, 2011)

Regan Possessed by the Devil

List of Illustrations

Figure 1. Friedkin, William (1973) The Exorcist [Poster] At: (Accessed on: 16.12.11)

Figure 2. Friedkin, William (1973) Exorcism [Screen cap] At: (Accessed on: 16.12.11)

Figure 3. Friedkin, William (1973) Regan Possessed by the Devil [Screen cap] At: (Accessed on: 16.12.11)


Collins, Andrew (2011) The Empire Essay: Exorcist (Accessed on: 16.12.11)

Keyes, David (1998) The Exorcist (Accessed on:16.12.11)

Puccio, John J. (2010) Exorcist, The - Blu-ray review (Accessed on: 16.12.11)

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