Film: The Exorcist
Director: William Friedkin
Writer: William Peter Blatty
Starring: Ellen Burstyn, Max von Sydow and Linda Blair
This film begins in Iraq, where an older priest is doing an archeological dig, played by Max von Sydow. He discovers a small statue of the head of a demon while doing this. He goes into town where we see that he has to take glycerin tablets for his heart.
We next meet a family where the mother is a movie star; she is played by Ellen Burstyn, who is making a film in Georgetown. Her daughter is played by Linda Blair and she is a teenager who likes to make art projects. They are happy family with their housekeepers.
Early on, Blair tells her mother that she talks to a spirit on an Ouija board named Capt. Howdy. Soon after Burstyn has a party where Blair comes down and says a cryptic message before urinating on the carpet.
She becomes ill and Burstyn tries everything to find out what is wrong with her. The problem is she continues to get worse and her life might be in danger. When medical reasons do not find what is wrong, her last resort is to ask a faith she doesn’t follow to save Blair from what could be inside her.
Can Burstyn find out what is wrong with Blair before it is too late? Will the spirit she has inside her kill her before it can be expelled? Is she really possessed?
This film is simply amazing. We have a religious film were science is used to exhaust all medical reasons as to why she is sick, but there is no answer. In that sense it is great because they don’t immediately use that as the answer and it takes quite a while before they come to that conclusion.
Issues that arise in this film are the love of a mother for her daughter, which is mirrored in the same aspect of Jesus/God’s love for his ‘children’ as well where the demon has possessed one in the same and need to save them. Another issue is the battle of good and evil and whether good can overcome evil.
The acting in this is great; especially from Blair as being at her age she does well for physically pretending to be possessed. She doesn’t use her own voice, but the way she moves her head while talking or doing certain thing is scary.
I would highly recommend this film if you want to see a scary movie. The acting is great; the story is solid, even though it isn’t highly complex. Seeing the pain that Burstyn feels for her daughter is great. The dilemma she faces and seeing the battle of Sydow and another priest against her is great as well. This film scared me the first time I saw it and I would highly recommend it to anyone who wants to see a great horror film.
My Rating: 9 out of 10