Just discovered a little tidbit about one of the scariest “Halloween” movies of all time, The Exorcist. Turns out it was never intended to be a horror story (Wha?! No, really.) but a story to encourage faith in God. Seriously. Here’s what the author, William Peter Blatty, said in his own words:
[T]he humiliating God’s-honest truth of the matter is that while I was working on “The Exorcist,” what I thought I was writing was a novel of faith in the popular dress of a thrilling and suspenseful detective story – in other words, a sermon that no one could possibly sleep through — and to this day I haven’t the faintest recollection of any intention to frighten the reader, which many will take, I suppose, as an admission of failure on an almost stupefying, scale.
Yeah, well, intentional or not, he did scare the Linda Blair out of all of us…that is, if you saw it, which…of course…I never did. ahem.
Blatty went on to explain the motivation behind the madness by saying that, though he participates in the fun aspect of Halloween, he really wishes more people would get it.
Oh well, sure: every year on the date I put out the pumpkin with the cutout eyes and nose and face and the basket full of Snickers and Mars Bars beside it; but I do keep wishing – oh, ever so wistfully and – let’s face it, hopelessly – that “The Exorcist” be remembered at this time of the year for being not about shivers but rather about souls, for then it would indeed be in the real and true spirit of Halloween, which is short for the eve of All Hallows or All Saints Day.
It seemed to all start for Blatty while in college at Georgetown, hearing about a real account of demon posession, decided that, “Someday, somebody’s got to write about this, because if an investigation were to prove that possession is real, what a help it would be to the struggling faith of possibly millions, for if there were demons, I reasoned, then why not angels? Why not God?”
I have to admit that there is a great deal of nobility in that desire, though, as Blatty himself has admitted, it didn’t seem to work. Nevertheless, for those of us who have an understanding that the greatest reality is the one we cannot see (yet!) with out eyes, we know that demons are, indeed, real, but that more powerful than even the strongest demonic spirit is the almighty God that Blatty was trying to encourage people to consider. Even so, I am thankful that I can declare that “He that is in me is greater than he that is in the world.” (1 John 4:4) What a great comfort whether I’m watching a movie about the reality of demons or experiencing the results of their work in the world around me, I need not fear…Christ is enough.
Happy Reformation Day! 😉
Full article here.