The Exorcism of Emily Rose (2005)
Directed by: Scott Derrickson | 115 minutes | drama, horror, thriller | Actors: Laura Linney, Tom Wilkinson, Campbell Scott, Jennifer Carpenter, Colm Feore, Joshua Close, Kenneth Welsh, Duncan Fraser, JR Bourne, Mary Beth Hurt, Henry Czerny, Shohreh Aghdashloo, Steve Archer
The story of Emily Rose is based on the true story of Anneliese Michel, a German girl from the 1970s. With true stories, it is often questionable whether it works out well to film them, especially when it comes to stories involving supernatural events. occur. ‘The Exorcism of Emily Rose’ could just as easily have been a ‘normal’ horror movie, but the fact that it actually took place gives it just that little bit more depth. In this case it has worked out positively.
The leading role is not reserved for Emily herself, but for Father Moore who performed the exorcism and for his lawyer, Erin Bruner, Tom Wilkinson and Laura Linney respectively. Both are good and seem aware of the heavy task that lies on their shoulders: making it all as convincing as possible. Of course, this also applies to Jennifer Carpenter who takes on the role of the devil-tormented Emily Rose. She is more than believable when her character has seizures. In the distance it is reminiscent of the story of The Exorcist, but because Emily looks much more natural and it is not exaggerated at all, it immediately comes across a lot more reliable. In addition, there is of course the free space, the viewer can choose what he believes; good arguments are given for both possibilities. Scott Derrickson wants people to think about the subject and faith after seeing this film. That also worked out nicely.
Derrickson chose to tell the story through flashbacks, which works very well in this context. For both views, the information is provided in such a way that the viewer ultimately no longer knows what the truth is. At the beginning of the film people remain skeptical about the possible presence of the devil, but as the end approaches that argument becomes much more believable, not in the least because the acting is particularly good. The background music and the suggestive camera work complete the picture.
‘The Exorcism of Emily Rose’ is an exciting film, but probably not exciting enough for horror fans. It has to rely mainly on suggestion and ultimately also on the viewer’s own thinking. The film encourages contemplation of the subject. Not an easy film, it gives enough food for thought.