The Rite - What do horror films say about God?


Antony Hopkins plays an exorcist in The Rite

Antony Hopkins plays an exorcist in The Rite

The Rite fails both as a horror film and as a religious experience. But it didn’t have to happen that way. I read Matt Baglio book’s The Rite: The Making of a Modern Exorcist (2009), on which the new film is loosely based, and talked to priests in California who knew the Rev Gary Thomas, the priest who inspired the book and who served as technical adviser for the film. They spoke well of him. But it doesn’t take much imagination to hear the film’s script writer saying, “Yes, Father, but we’ve got to jazz it up to pull them in.”   

The central question, especially in a “religious” film, is: What is the director trying to say?

To read Raymond A Schroth article in America magazine see: www.americamagazine.org/content/culture.cfm?cultureid=172

Share this story