The Exorcist (1973)

“Something beyond comprehension is happening to a little girl on this street, in this house. A man has been called for as a last resort to try and save her. That man is The Exorcist

Ok, you can tell I am still catching up on reviews from the Halloween season. So, it’s not like I am getting in the holiday season mood with a viewing of The Exorcist. In my opinion the scariest movie ever made. This is also one of the few horror movies that received critical acclaim, nominated for a total of 10 Oscars including Best Picture. If you don’t know the story, it is about a young girl possessed by a demon. Her mother turns to a local priest, who has just lost his mother and is starting to have questions about his own faith. It is this priest, Father Karras, who realizes the little Girl Regan needs a lot of help, in fact she needs an Exorcist.

This film has a great cast of characters. Ellen Burstyn (Requiem for a Dream, The Yards, and Best Actress nominee for The Exorcist) plays Regan’s mother and local actress, Chris MacNeil. She plays a very caring mother who really doesn’t have a strong religious background of any kind, yet finds herself to the point of breaking down and helpless when it comes to helping her sick daughter. Jason Miller plays Father Karras, who was also nominated for a Best Actor Oscar in this film. A wonderful surprise performance from Linda Blair (Airport 1975, The Exorcist 2: The Heretic) who plays Regan. She was nominated for Supporting Actress. Unfortunately she did such a great job, she fell into a Hollywood stereo type of playing in a lot of B Horror movies like Hell Night. Long time great Lee J. Cobb (12 Angry Men, The Three Faces of Eve) also has a significant role as the detective investigating the murder.

I know some that have laughed this movie off, and I guess that can be expected some as much as this film has been lampooned and joked about. Just mentioning the words “Pea Soup” is iconic for the film, and even people who haven’t seen the film get this reference. Is it a horror film. Yes. Is it a religious film. Yes. The one thing this film will always remain is a true classic and the scariest film of all time.

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