In the book Michael leaves the states and goes to Rome to train as an exorcist, but he is a fifty-something man, experienced as a priest, and not struggling with his faith or lack thereof. Why did they change him in the film version to a young man, a transitional deacon who isn’t sure what he believes? Not to make him more relatable. It’s the writer’s job to make any character relatable at any age. And I found the old exorcist-priest to be very relatable. No, it was, I believe, to increase the contrast between the exorcist in training, who is not yet a priest and who has not made the decision to believe, with the man, Fr Lucas, who has been a priest and exorcist for many years, and has forgotten that belief is, indeed, a decision. The old priest-exorcist has begun to believe that he is the one working the exorcism. He has forgotten that only God can do such a thing and that God works through him. The old exorcist has his “bag of tricks”, as Michael calls it. The moment Fr Lucas says, in the hospital, “I failed her,” the devil finds his way in. Continue reading “The Rite, Transition From Doubt to Belief”
The newly released film, The Rite, takes seriously the problem of evil. It takes a serious look at the way some of us (most of us?) struggle with our faith. And our lack of faith. Our longing to have faith, to believe and not waiver. Our victories and our defeats. People who criticize The Rite for not being The Exorcist completely miss the point. Catholics who criticize The Rite for getting the priesthood or The Faith all wrong miss the point too. Continue reading “Getting The Rite Right (film version)”
I haen’t seen a movie in a theater since “Sherlock Holmes” was playing. But tonight I splurged and went with friends to see The Rite. I’m going to wait until I’ve had a little time (to think, read, pray, pray, and, oh, did I mention, pray?) before I try to write a more in-depth review. I want to do justice to this film. My first impression? It’s good. I want to see it again. I’ve been doing some research tonight and downloaded the book. Look for the actual review in a couple of days (give or take one or two).
Rating The Rite
In General: 5 Stars for a Ripping Good Romp That Made Me Jump (for scaring the you-know-what out of me and making me throw my popcorn on the ladies in the next row).
Representing Catholicism: 4 Stars and Better Than I’d Expected (and the priesthood was unexpectedly respected!).
Taking Evil Seriously: 5 Stars for The Conversations and Soul-Searching Provoked (and inspiring me to an even deeper commitment to resisting the devil and his culture of death with all my heart and mind and to my very last breath).