Matt's Reviews > The Exorcist

The Exorcist by William Peter Blatty
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's review
Jan 21, 2009

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bookshelves: supernatural

The Exorcist film (in particular, the director's cut) is almost a carbon copy of Blatty's book, with a few exceptions. There is a lot more medical and psychological ground work in the book, more information on what drives key characters and a sub plot involving servants of the MacNeil family. The style of writing is punchy and fast paced, and the conversations between Father Karras and the demon are well written. They don't focus on trying to be scary as in the film, and Father Karras's attempts to logically explain the phenomena in his head while speaking with the demon give the scenes more depth.

For those of you who have never seen the film, or are unaware of the story, the book is about Chris MacNeil, an actress, whose daughter Regan seemingly becomes possessed while using a ouija board. MacNeil enlists several doctors and psychiatrists to no avail. Her search for help then leads to a priest, Father Karras, who is a trained psychologist and at a point in his life where he is struggling with his faith. It's unclear throughout much of the book whether or not Regan is truly possessed or just insane.
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