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Director of ‘The Exorcist’, William Friedkin, on his new documentary ‘The Devil and Father Amorth’


Ted Johnson
Variety

© The Orchard

William Friedkin returned to Washington last week to talk about his latest project – The Devil and Father Amorth, a documentary project that explores real-life exorcisms.

In it, Friedkin witnesses and films an exorcism in Italy in 2016, of a young Italian woman named Christina who believed that she was possessed. The experience was different from what was portrayed in Friedkin’s 1973 classic, The Exorcist, but he says that it was still very chilling.

“I had to consider whether or not I wanted to show this, but I ultimately felt that I had seen it and people should see it,” Friedkin tells Variety’s “PopPolitics” on SiriusXM.

Several years ago, Friedkin was in Italy and met with Father Gabriele Amorth, then regarded as the foremost Catholic authority on exorcisms, and Amorth agreed to let him witness one and to shoot it, on the condition that it only be with a small camera and no lighting.

“I doubt that there’s one percent of people on Earth who have seen an exorcism – a real Roman Catholic exorcism. Most of the priests had never seen it,” Friedkin says.

In the documentary, Friedkin shows his footage to a number of university medical professionals, including psychiatrists, and “they have never seen anything like this, and they all said they wouldn’t know what to do with this woman. They couldn’t operate on her.”

The Exorcist featured levitation and head-spinning, and it was a work of fiction. The documentary isn’t as physically dramatic, but Christina’s behavior is unexplained. She goes into a trance-like state, and as Amorth performs a battery of prayers, she starts becoming agitated, and then has to be restrained as her voice changes to a guttural tone. She yells at him as if they are the words of Satan, as several men restrain her.

One of the doctors Friedkin interviewed has been involved in a brain mapping program. He “said that he had no idea what this was, but said that just because we don’t understand something doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist,” Friedkin says. “That is how I come down on possession and exorcisms. I can’t say that I understand it. There are no experts. Not even in the priesthood, or at the highest levels of the Catholic Church.

The Exorcist was shot in Georgetown in 1972, and the film crew stayed across the Potomac at the Key Bridge Marriott, the same summer that Bob Woodward was “interviewing Deep Throat in the garage,” Friedkin says. George McGovern, then running for president, would come by the home at Prospect and 36th, where scenes were shot, and watched the filming.

In The Devil and Father Amorth, Friedkin goes back to some of the locations, including the famous steps that are now a tourist landmark.

“Not much has changed,” Friedkin says of Washington then and now. “It is as politically precipitous today, in a different way, as it was then. Political problems, suspicion of the president of this or that, investigations all over town. Watergate was in the papers every day.”

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Paranormal

A photographer took a picture of an old house, but did not know that a woman lived there. No wonder – you can only see it in the photo

A Scottish resident took a photo of an abandoned building, and then could not believe his eyes when he looked at the finished photograph. From there the woman’s face was looking at him, but the man is sure: there was no one in the ruins of the house. Finding an explanation for what he saw was not easy.

A photographer from Scotland, who wished to remain anonymous, decided to arrange an unusual photo session, Unilad writes.

His choice fell on several abandoned buildings that are located in one of the parks in the North Ayrshire region. After taking a couple of pictures, he went to the studio to print them, and then looked at the finished result.

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The negative of one of the photographs of the photographer

Mysticism often happens in abandoned buildings , and the case with a man was no exception. In one photo, the Scotsman saw the ghostly silhouette of a woman looking at him from a window. However, the man assures that there was no one in the building, and he was alone in the ruins.

During the shooting, I did not feel anything unusual or anything otherworldly.

Despite the fact that the woman’s face looks intimidating, he is glad that he managed to capture it. Moreover, the hero of the story shared the frame with all friends who adore mysticism and riddles.

(Untitled)

Pay attention to the left window

I’m happy that I was able to capture something that looks like a ghost. I am even proud to be able to show photos to people who love riddles.

Many people, according to the photographer, are inclined to believe that this is a ghost, who love to talk to children so much, although the author of the picture himself is in no hurry to draw conclusions. He even looked at the frame under a microscope, but never came to the truth.

You can, of course, speculate, but the human brain makes us see familiar traits everywhere, especially if we look at them long enough.

(Untitled)

Moreover, the photographer, according to him, does not really believe in ghosts and other mystical phenomena.

I don’t like the term paranormal. As for ghosts, I don’t know if they exist. I don’t even know how to define them. What is it? Energy?

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Paranormal

Camera recorded an extraneous movement in Massachusetts. And this sight is not for the faint-hearted

A Redditt user with the nickname grandslammer0891 from Mansfield, Massachusetts, posted a video from security cameras at a friend’s house, which scared him and left users in disbelief.

The author of the video explained that his friend left home by the end of August, leaving four huskies in the care of a friend. He usually visited them during the daytime.

One day the owner of the apartment received a notification in the middle of the night that the camera recorded some kind of extraneous movement. At that time there were only dogs in the house.

The video captured the kitchen and part of the living room. A dog is lying on the sofa in the right corner, and you can trace the turns of the head by its ears. When her ears turn to the left, then in the dark you can see the transparent figure of a moving person.

The video puzzled users and caused a mixed reaction from them. Some could not find an explanation for what they saw and panicked slightly. The dog’s head turns towards the ghost, which suggests that it also noticed the apparition.

“What is it, I saw it … with my own eyes. Does anyone else see this? Because it seems to me that I definitely saw something wrong. No no”.

Others decided that a man had walked past the window on the right, and his shadow flashed on the left in the headlights. Some users even believe that a live person got into the frame.

“I hope your buddy has a gun. There was a real intruder. “

Some readers agreed that the ghost video is quite plausible, since Massachusetts is full of ghosts.

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Paranormal

Paranormal researcher warns that Ouija boards can summon dangerous demons

Paranormal researcher Paul Marsters criticized British retailer Poundland for selling Ouija boards as part of Halloween decor. He warned that only professional mediums should use the boards, and ordinary people can summon deadly demons. 

Paul, who is a member of True Paranormal Events UK, was stunned when he saw a £ 1 ($ 1.29) Ouija board in a local budget store.

 “Ouija boards are definitely not toys and should not be available to children to buy in stores on Halloween, let alone adults who are not trained in how to use them. It doesn’t matter if they are plastic or wooden ”, – quotes the words of the ghost hunter Hull Live. 

Paul Marsters explained that people can accidentally summon dangerous spirits that will torment their victim in the future and may even lead to suicide. 

“On Halloween night, the veil on the spirit world is very thin, and people only buy these boards for Ouija sessions on Halloween, so I’m afraid to imagine what will happen when these boards are in the wrong hands,” the expert said. 

Poundland noted that Ouija boards can only be purchased by persons over 18 years of age. This item sold out quickly before Halloween due to its popularity.

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