Directed By – William Friedkin
Screenplay By – William Peter Blatty
Cinematography By – Owen Roizman
Starring Ellen Burstyn, Jason Miller, Linda Blair & Max von Sydow
My first note after watching The Exorcist is that I forgot how long this movie is. Not that it is a super long movie, but I just had remembered it as being more in the 90 minutes range. Luckily I was wrong because the extra thirty minutes is so necessary in this movie and makes this movie all the more fun and scary. There’s not too many “jump” moments in The Exorcist per se, but the overall tone is scary and the momentum builds up from the first scene to the last.
Is The Exorcist a perfect horror film? You bet your sweet ass it is! Does it make you question your faith, your belief in science and medicine? Hell yeah it does! I love The Exorcist and it is just so much better than 99.99% of horror films out there.
It’s funny not having watched The Exorcist in a while and having seen Requiem for a Dream rather recently, all I could see when watching Ellen Burstyn as the mother in The Exorcist is her becoming an old prescription medicine junky obsessed with her appearance, aka her character in Requiem. I wasn’t completely successful, but I did try my hardest to put her future role aside and take her as the actress mother who’s daughter gets possessed.
My last note is that this movie is that much more awesome when you know who Max von Sydow is. I was introduced to von Sydow through the work of Ingmar Bergman and love him. My recommendation is to look him up and watch some of his work and then you too will be like “What? Max von Sydow is in The Exorcist and he’s a fucking badass old exorcist priest! This movie is that much more awesome!” You’ll also realize you’ve seen more of his films than you’d expect.
Thank whatever supreme being you pray to for movies like The Exorcist. God Bless America.