Lorna… the Exorcist (1974)

aka Les possedees du diable
Article 3796 by Dave Sindelar
Viewing Date: 12-26-2011
Posting Date: 1-5-2012
Directed by Jesus Franco
Featuring Pamela Stanford, Guy Delorme, Lina Romay
Country: France
What it is: Witch story, Franco style

A businessman’s career is made prosperous by a witch who demands that the man’s to-be-born daughter is given to her when she turns eighteen. Nineteen years later, the man has become reluctant to give up his daughter. What price will he pay?

Forget any reference to exorcists or exorcisms in the movie’s title; there’s none of that here; I suspect someone took the fact that the French title roughly translates as “possession of the devil” and figured that attaching the word “exorcist” to it was appropriate. And, given that the director was Jesus Franco, I would suspect that the movie would be more likely to be an exploration of Franco’s usual obsessions rather than any imitation of THE EXORCIST. Still, this is a surprisingly focused movie from Franco; it actually seems to have a plot, for one thing. Still, with Franco, the plot is bare bones enough so that he can fill things out with his obsessions, which, on top of the usual set of them, also seems to take in modern architecture and eye makeup here. It does get rather outrageous at times, especially in the sequences involving the wife’s death and the one in which Lorna seduces the daughter. Still, I think you really have to share Franco’s obsessions to be fully entertained by this; for one thing, I get bored of watching a naked woman thrash around on a bed a lot sooner than Franco does, and I find a lot of the reactions are so far over the top that they become silly. Still, I wouldn’t be surprised if this one is a favorite among Francophiles.


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