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Archive for the "devil in film" Category

The Possession Presents Jewish Perspective on Possession and Exorcism

The Possession is Sam Raimi’s most recent horror film, and it also represents Hollywood horror’s latest installment in our ongoing fascination with the idea of possession by a dark spiritual force and the related process of exorcism. What makes Raimi’s film different from so many of the films that explore this theme is it’s Jewish […]

Psychology Today: What is it That Fascinates Us About Exorcism and Demonic Possession?

A series of bad reviews by film critics, echoed by many rank and file moviegoers, didn’t stop The Devil Inside from doing extremely well at the box office. The film is but the latest in a string of films with the theme of demonic possession, forming a horror subgenre in their own right. This includes […]

The Devil Inside: CFQ Spotlight Podcast 3:1

The horror preferences of a younger generation, coupled with the continued popularity of “found footage” and demonic possession themes in horror, led to a great weekend at the box office for The Devil Inside. Although I haven’t seen the film, I provided some input for the discussion at the Cinefantastique Spotlight Podcast 3:1 on the […]

Satanism, Exorcism and Social Horror Trends

An article that ran in The Telegraph on 7 April titled “Rise in demand for exorcism recalls horror trend,” caught my attention, not only for its connection of concerns over the demonic and contemporary horror films, but also for some of the provocative claims it made. Looking back at The Exorcist (1973) and an increase […]

TheoFantastique Podcast 2.1 on The Rite

TheoFantastique Podcast, Vol. 2, no. 1 is now available. It involves a discussion on The Rite with past guests and contributors, including Douglas Cowan, author of a number of books including Sacred Terror: Religion and Horror on the Silver Screen; Paul Meehan, also the author of a number of books including Horror Noir: Where Cinema’s […]

Cinefantastique Online – The RITE: Satan, Possession, and Unlikely Sources of Faith

My latest contribution to Cinefantastique Online is now available, an essay titled “THE RITE: Satan, Possession, and Unlikely Sources of Faith.” From the introduction: The Devil and the related phenomenon of demonic possession, have been the source of several horror films for the years. Previous decades offered THE EXORCIST (1973), with its Roman Catholic perspective, […]

THE RITE: Modern Exorcism in Theaters January 2011

Our fascination with the devil in popular culture as informed by the Christian tradition continues, or at least Hollywood’s assumption that this figure is of interest to us, with the release of The Rite in January 2011. The film is “inspired by” the book of the same title by Matt Baglio. See the film’s website […]

Satan is Busy at the Box Office

A consideration of recent items in popular culture reveals that Satan is a popular figure. Eli Roth’s The Last Exorcism is at the top of the box office at the time of the writing of this post, and seems to be well received by many horror film websites and blogs. In turn, the release of […]

Joseph Laycock: The Exorcist, Secularization, and Folk Piety

Joseph Laycock is an independent scholar and doctoral candidate at Boston University, and author of Vampires Today: The Truth About Modern Vampirism (Praeger, 2009) who was interviewed here in the recent past on this book. He has returned to discuss a paper he submitted to the Interdisciplinary Journal of Research on Religion titled “The Folk Piety […]

Carrol L. Fry – Cinema of the Occult: New Age, Satanism, Wicca, and Spiritualism in Film

Various aspects of the occult, or as it is more commonly referred to today in academic circles, Western esotericism, have long been facets that have informed storytelling and fear in horror films. A recent book by Carrol Fry touches on this topic, titled Cinema of the Occult: New Age, Satanism, Wicca and Spiritualism in Film (Rosemont […]

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