Saturday 26 December 2020

especially important is the warning to avoid conversations with the demon

For the anniversary of the film’s 1973 debut in American cinemas, we return to this retrospective appreciation of William Peter Blatty’s (*1928 – †2017) The Exorcist and its cultural moment from Open Culture and Mental Floss. For a movie about the Church’s dogmatic approach to demonic possession it really had lasting cache for terrified audiences, the film retaining the title as the biggest grossing R-rated horror production until being dethroned by the remake of It in 2017. With The Omen, Burnt Offerings, Poltergeist and The Amityville Horror to follow, the success of The Exorcist established the speculative, supernatural genre impressing and priming audiences for more, much as 2001: A Space Odyssey (previously) had done for science fiction and consequent revival of the Space Opera. See more at the link above.