Now that it’s Halloween Month 2020, I’d like to share you fellow movie goers from around the globe a criminally underrated legal crime-drama horror film loosely based on a true story about an agnostic lawyer who defends a priest after a botched exorcism of a young woman who suffered from schizophrenia and episodes of hallucinations. The premise I’m referring to is from “The Exorcism Of Emily Rose.”
The Exorcism Of Emily Rose was released in 2005. (same year Batman Begins came out) It received mixed reviews from critics and movie goers alike. Despite mixed reception, it managed to make enough money at the box office.
Today’s review doesn’t have any SPOILERS whatsoever. Feel free to read my non-spoiler article. Does The Exorcism Of Emily Rose is in need of attention during that time of Halloween Month? Well let’s find out shall we?
Right & Wrong Elements
Right: Laura Linney (Wendy Bryde from Ozark) & Tom Wilkinson (Carmine Falcone from Batman Begins) both did a great job for their respective performances.
Scott Derrickson (Dr. Strange) did a decent job for directing the film.
Jennifer Carpenter (Debra Morgan from Showtime’s Dexter) also did a great job for her performance as Emily Rose. She also did some of her own stunts contorting her body without a body double or C.G.I.
Christopher Young (Hellraiser, The Hurricane, Spider-Man 3) orchestrated music for the film.
Practical Effects were used to bring some specific “demonic magic” to life in order to activate Emily’s psychosis.
Computer Animation was used minimally without giving overboard on way too many C.G.I. effects.
The Main Theme focus on Fact Or Fiction centering around Emily’s condition if she was possessed by a demon spirit or experienced hallucinations due to schizophrenia. Fact Or Fiction is presented from two perspectives. One from a lawyer giving out a fictional version & one from a prosecutor giving out true statements from Emily’s health records and psychological profile.
Flashbacks play a core role on going back in time to see Emily who used to be a happy girl who wanted to pursue her dream to become a teacher. Until a fateful event we already know from the beginning of the movie.
Although no actual antagonist was present, the scare factor has got to be from a person with mental problems has gone through an unpleasant experience suffering from hallucinations. This gives a whole new meaning of whether or not you should go to a doctor for medication or take an extreme approach without going back. If that ever happened to me or anybody, things could turn from bad to worse if not done correctly.
Unlike some supernatural horror films like “The Exorcist,” using a demonic antagonist as a sinister force to move the plot forward, Emily Rose is a straight up legal drama depicting both sides from a lawyer & a prosecutor as the jury tries to decide whether or not the priest is guilty or innocent.
I find the concept of using a psychological profile with a touch of possible demonic possession unique. Making it difficult for Laura Linney’s character, Erin Bruner to defend Tom Wilkinson’s character, Father Richard Moore.
Emily’s background is addressed when she suffered from schizophrenia and episodes of unpleasant hallucinations.
Wrong: Cinematography can be shaky in various scenes. Who’s in charge of filming a Speedy Gonzalez (from Looney Tunes) under the influence of Monster Energy Drinks?
A text never shows up that this movie took an artistic license changing Anneliese Michel life by rearranging many elements such as The 70’s updated to the modern era and chaining Anneliese’s name into Emily Rose. It could’ve been forgiving if a disclaimer pops up like “Fargo” pragmatically changing the victims’ real life identities in the film & FX series out of respect for the their loved ones.
The Final Verdict: B, FOR BRILLIANT
Despite my two biggest gripes, The Exorcism Of Emily Rose is a criminally underrated legal horror crime-drama is need of a recognition during every Halloween Month If you’re looking for something to watch during Halloween Month, this hidden gem is definitely worth your spare time.