THE EXORCIST (1973)
Article #538 by Dave Sindelar
Viewing date: 9-4-2002
Posting date: 1-28-2003
When the daughter of an actress is possessed by a demon, a psychiatrist priest is called in to investigate.
Because this movie was William Friedkin’s follow-up to his oscar-winning THE FRENCH CONNECTION, it was given greater attention and prestige than was usually accorded to horror movies, even garnering an Oscar nomination for Best Picture. Though I hadn’t seen the movie, I kind of resented that this movie got so much attention when many other great horror movies over the years were largely ignored. It wasn’t until I finally caught it years later that I was impressed, and I still am; despite the endless talk about the pea-soup spitting, the foul language and the head-spinning, it’s the other aspects of this movie that really make it work; the interesting array of characters, the subtle ways in which the plot flows, the excellent use of sound effects to create an atmosphere of unease and the excellent performances throughout all give the movie a depth and a texture that is highly effective. I also like the feel it gives of being a snapshot of a much deeper story; every character seems to have a real history to them, and one really gets a sense that this conflict between good and evil is something that has been going on for ages, and that we are just seeing one point on the chronology of the story.