Ultimate 70s Blogathon: The Exorcist (1973) by Emma K Wall (Explains It All)

Ultimate 70s Blogathon

Our next participant joining us for the Ultimate 70s Blogathon is Emma from Emma K Wall (Explains It All) with her review of The Exorcist. Before we talk about how iconic The Exorcist is since we have two entries for it already, remember to check out Emma’s amazing blog where she talks about movies, TV, music and books and injects a great personality and style to it all. Its always a fun time over there.

Without further ado, here’s her review of horror classic, The Exorcist.


Thank you to Drew and Kim for hosting such a great blogathon! And what a cool, psychedelic banner you created too (if I may add – see my right-hand column for proof).

The Exorcist (1973) – Film Review

The Exorcist

Though not one of my absolute personal favourites (like top 20 or something), I still believe that The Exorcist is one of the greatest horror films, if not THE greatest horror film ever made. And I realise that’s an incredibly bold statement but it’s hard to imagine anything else ever being as infamous, chilling and powerful. It’s the ultimate battle between good and evil. It has an amazing atmosphere, pairing great writing with genuine terror and is still scary to this day (45 years after its original release – actually that might be the scariest fact of all!). Anyway, twinned with the fact I’d watched it fairly recently it was an easy choice for the Ultimate 70s Blogathon.

I first watched The Exorcist as a teenager (almost a rite of passage) and it did really scare me. But let’s just get this out the way now – of course it won’t ‘scare’ everyone. And of course it won’t scare you if you watch it with your stoner mates and laugh loudly through the crucifix scene. But that doesn’t make it shit, okay? I don’t often get on my high horse with movies (not unless someone starts slagging of Face Off or Zoolander) but it genuinely irritates me when people say “The Exorcist? That’s shit! I thought it was funny”. Er, no mate. It wasn’t the first ever horror film nominated for a Best Picture Oscar for nothing you know (though it didn’t win). Aaaaand exhale.

The Exorcist is an Absolute Classic – plain and simple. I refuse to hear otherwise. Apart from some valid points already mentioned, there are other various reasons it deserves the jagged, bloody crown of horror.

The Exorcist

Based on a novel, it has a super, valid and coherent story. Made in the 70s it has those beautiful on-screen retro effects. You know when they’re all freezing cold in Regan’s room and their breath comes out white? Well the room really was like an ice box. And you know Regan’s horrible gravely ‘possessed’ voice? That really was done by a voice actress – who chain smoked and drank whiskey to get the tone right (you gotta love that relaxed 1970s outlook).

It’s also very well directed and I can only assume William Friedkin pissed off the entire set with his gung-ho attitude. Examples include firing a real gun next to someone’s head to get a ‘real’ reaction and the bit where Regan’s mother (Ellen Burstyn) is attacked by her possessed daughter, well she really WAS in pain – and shouting angrily at Friedkin as she landed on the floor, screaming and clutching her back. It was a genuine reaction – and cheerfully kept in the film. If you care to check out the IMDB trivia page you’ll find lots of similar stories. And then of course there’s the cool mystery, intrigue and real life horror that generally surrounds The Exorcist. Like the myth that there was evil ‘written into the pages’ of the script, making it a cursed movie from the beginning. With deaths on the set and a fire that halted production for a number of weeks, interestingly there was actually a real life exorcism ON SET – that’s how freaked out they all were. And the terror definitely continued with the audience, with reports of people fainting, throwing up and running out of the cinema, one guy apparently actually broke his jaw as he collapsed in shear, dramatic fear.

Aside from all that, it also seems important to point out that The Exorcist is also scary, simply because it’s just that – SCARY. It’s dark, it’s claustrophobic, there’s creepy eyes and demonic voices, evil laughter, dark corners and tension. We’re talking about a cute little girl possessed by a malevolent demon for goodness sake. And though it’s now been done many, many (yawn) times, back in 1973, can you imagine how effing terrifying it was?

                                                                                                                                 The Exorcist

So, what more proof do we need that The Exorcist is a terrifying and brilliant delight? We have a great story, a mental director, superb old effects and a genuine feel of evil. Well, I suppose we could do with a world famous theme tune? Something that everyone now associates with the film? Happily The Exorcist also succeeds this, in the shape of Mike Oldfield’s the Tubular Bells. Not a score written for the movie, but a piece of music used in the movie and now basically as famous as the movie. And in places, just as scary.

Ultimate 70s Blogathon: Westworld (1973) by Riley on Film

Kicking off Week 2 of Ultimate 70s Blogathon is Damien from Riley on Film with his review of 1973 sci-fi thriller Westworld. Head over to Drew’s Movie Reviews to check it out!

You can check out all the entries here.

via Ultimate 70s Blogathon: Westworld (1973) by Riley on Film

Reblog: Ultimate 70s Blogathon: The Exorcist (1973) by MovieRob

***Sorry for the late reblog. It seems the reblog button has vanished and I was hoping it was just a maintenance bug with WordPress. However, here’s the manual reblog! Have any of you encountered the same problem?***

Yesterday’s fantastic Ultimate 70s Blogathon entry was from the amazing MovieRob who I know as someone who doesn’t watch horror however he’s offered as the first of two entries, a review of 1973’s horror classic, The Exorcist. I’ve never seen The Exorcist before and I wonder if it’ll hold up if I were to watch it today. Let me just mention that MovieRob is awesome in many ways as a movie reviewer, he also is the first participant in the blogathon to break us out of the latter 70s great films and takes us back to the first half of 70s. Great job!

Head over to Drew’s Movie Reviews to check out his fantastic review of The Exorcist HERE.

On the side note: If you want to catch up with all the posts, we have a Ultimate 70s Blogathon list HERE which is updated daily.

Ultimate 70s Blogathon: Slap Shot (1977) – Ten Stars or Less

To wrap up the first week of Ultimate 70s Blogathon is Ryan from Ten Stars or Less and his look at 1977 sports film Slapshot. Ten Stars or Less gives nice and quick reviews of all kinds of movies everyday with a lovely rating system just as the site’s name implies, out of 10.

Let’s check out what makes Slap Shot his Ultimate 70’s pick!

Slapshot

Just waiting for the next line brawl!

 
slapshot posterIf you google the top movies from the 1970’s you will get a long list of franchise defining movies like The Godfather, The Exorcist, Jaws, Halloween, Rocky, Star Wars, and many other Oscar worthy films that defined the decade. I could have chosen any of those epic movies but I figured everyone else was going to so I went off the charts here. Hockey has been a huge part of my life since I was kid and although Slap Shot is not the kind of movie young kids should be watching, I’ve been watching it since a very young age. Slap Shot means as much to the game of hockey, the history of the sport, as the black puck or the ice itself.
 
You are probably asking yourself how do I come to that conclusion, some 40 years later? Well let’s take a moment to examine the connections between the Hollywood version of hockey and the actual game itself. Before I forget to mention it, Paul Newman actually learn how to skate for his role and did all of his scenes. How’s that for a bit of movie/hockey trivia?
 
This film is based on the fictional Charlestown Chiefs, who play in the Federal League. They are a loveable bunch of losers who couldn’t win a hockey game if the other team didn’t show up and they had the ice to themselves. Led by player/coach Red Dunlop (Newman) and leading scorer Ned Braden (<span class=”itemprop”>Michael Ontkean), the Chiefs are looking to relocate to Florida when the local mill closes. In order to make the deal possible, the Chiefs need to change their identity and become winners. Penny pinching General Manager Joe McGrath (Strother Martin) brings in three brothers from the Iron League to change the personality of the team and ignite a fire in the guys. Jeff, Jack, and Steve Hanson are some of the weirdest hockey players you’ll ever meet, but man can these guys play. Whether it’s fighting the opponents, the fans, or each other, the Chiefs begin to win and earns points as they make their way to the championship and hopefully to the sunny beaches of south Florida. </span>
 
Slap Shot

Hard to tell if this picture of Hansons was taken before or after the game.

Hockey was a rough and tumble game in the 1970’s. For people who watch today’s game, fighting is non-existent and the game is all about speed and finesse. Several decades ago it was about hitting your opponent through the boards or breaking your stick across their skull. There’s a scene in Slap Shot where one of the Hanson brothers gets hit in the face by a key chain, which prompts the Chiefs to invade the stands and fight everyone. Sadly, there was a game in which a player from the Boston Bruins went into the crowd and fought some fans for God knows what reasons.

 

The Boston Bruins invading the stands 1979

I love hockey history and the 1970’s is definitely one of the most talked about periods. The National Hockey League had expanded from six to 12 teams in 1967 and the power house Boston Bruins would fight against their arch rivals the Montreal Canadiens numerous times for the Stanley Cup during the decade. Meanwhile down in Philadelphia, the Flyers were one of the new expansion teams and looked to leave their mark on the sport. Named “The Board Street Bullies” for their wrestling style of hockey, the Flyers became the first expansion team to win the Stanley Cup just seven years after joining the league. A lot of the guys from those teams are in the Hall of Fame, but none of them have all their teeth. Aggressive play has both its rewards and consequences. As evident in Slap Shot, fighting may look pretty on the outside, but when you are in the trenches, it is all out war and some are lucky to survive.
 

Board Street Bullies doing what they do best…

 
I chose Slap Shot as my selection for the Ultimate 70’s pick because it really glorifies what playing hockey was like during that decade. If you didn’t bleed or you still had all your teeth, you weren’t really a hockey player. This film, based on several character’s real life experiences in the bus riding minor leagues, is everything you would want in a movie. There is plenty of sex, dirty jokes, violence, great hockey action, a variety of stupid characters, some crazy characters, a guy named Killer, a goalie who plays despite not taking his medication, brothers who play with this fists, and a general manager who makes his players perform in fashion shows. A lot of the story won’t make any sense to the average movie goer who doesn’t like sports, even though this is really the ultimate Cinderella story for hockey movies. If you play hockey, you can probably quote this movie by heart and definitely know a guy who owns a Chiefs jersey. That’s the beauty of it all.
 
There will be hundreds of movies out there that remind people of life back in the 1970’s, but there will always be one Holy Grail of hockey movies, the film every film made after it has to live to, and that is Slap Shot. Arguably the greatest hockey movie of all-time.
 
slap shot

The Charlestown Chiefs

Ultimate 70s Blogathon: Kramer vs. Kramer (1979) – Movie Reviews 101

Next up in the Ultimate 70’s Blogathon is Darren from Movie Reviews 101! If you don’t know Movie Reviews 101, well, you are definitely missing out some great stuff. Darren is the host of the monthly Opinion Battles which is now in the 4th year. At the same time his review blog reviews movies every single day with his own rating system. On top of that, Darren is also co-host of the Talking Stars Podcast.

Without further ado, let’s check out his selection, Kramer vs. Kramer!

Kramer vs. Kramer (1979)

kramer vs. kramer

Director: Robert Benton

Writer: Robert Benton (Screenplay) Avery Corman (Novel)

Starring: Dustin Hoffman, Meryl Streep, Jane Alexander, Justin Henry, Howard Duff, George Coe

Plot: Ted Kramer‘s wife leaves her husband, allowing for a lost bond to be rediscovered between Ted and his son, Billy. But a heated custody battle ensues over the divorced couple’s son, deepening the wounds left by the separation.

Tagline – There are three sides to this love story!

Runtime: 1 Hour 44 Minutes

There may be spoilers the rest of the review 

Verdict: Masterclass

StoryKramer vs Kramer starts as Joanna Kramer (Streep) walks out on her businessman husband Ted (Hoffman) leaving him to raise their child Billy (Henry). Ted must learn how to be a single parent while also keeping his career on path because he is on the verge of one of his biggest moments of his career.

15 months later Joanna reappears in the Ted’s life wanting custody which leads to a heated custody battle between the parents while Ted must deal with his own career problems.

Thoughts on Kramer vs. Kramer

Characters – Ted Kramer is a busy marketing man whose wife walks out on him leaving him to raise his child alone, the added responsibility of raising his son, his work starts to get comprised but it is when his wife returns, where Ted must fight for full custody of his own son. Joanna is the wife that walks out on the family, when she returns she wants to have custody of her son again, we don’t learn much else about her during the time which disappoints. Margaret is the neighbour that is there for Ted during his tough times. Billy is the child that finds himself in the middle of the custody battle after 15 months with just his father.

Performances – Dustin Hoffman gives us an acting masterclass here showing he can give us an Oscar worthy performance given the right material. Meryl Streep is fantastic in the supporting role showing us just how good her talent was going to be. Justin Henry gives on of the best child actors performances too in this film.

Story – The story follows one man needing to learn to be a better father once he is left alone with his son, before turning into a custody battle, which has become an all too often event in the modern world. Seeing how the custody battle unfolds brings us into the reality of how difficult a job being a single parent holding down the job on demanding success level can be. We learn how wrong the system appears to be in one of the most powerful films you will see.

Settings – The New York setting shows how busy the lives of the people involved would be.

Scene of the Movie – The aftermath of the case in the park.

That Moment That Annoyed Me – I feel we could have learnt a lot more about Joanna’s motivation during the 15-months too.

Award Wins: Won 5 Oscars

Final Thoughts – This is one of the most powerful, perfectly acted movies you will ever see, the emotions you will feel will leave you broken for what is one of the best films ever made.

Overall: Easily one of the greatest films of all time.

Rating

Ultimate 70s Blogathon: Star Wars: A New Hope (1977) by Box Office Buzz

Ashley from Box Office Buzz shares her review of Star Wars: A New Hope, the movie that started the popular and beloved Star Wars franchise. Head over to Drew’s Movie Reviews to check it out!

Drew's Movie Reviews

My fellow Star Wars and MCU enthusiast, Ashley, enters the blogathon with the first non-host entry. If you are unfamiliar with Ashley, she runs Box Office Buzz, reviewing all sorts of films, creating lists, and examining the movie industry as a whole. If you don’t follow her already, do yourself a favor and give her site a look, after you finish up here of course! Now let’s get to her review of the film that started one of the most popular film franchises in cinema history.


Star Wars original movie posterFew film franchises have had as widespread or lasting an impact as Star Wars. For over 40 years and counting, the franchise has continued to draw in new fans to a certain galaxy “a long time ago” and “far, far away.” It’s hard to imagine a time when Star Wars wasn’t a part of pop culture, so it’s interesting to think that back…

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Ultimate 70s Kickoff: Saturday Night Fever (1977)

Drew kicks off the Ultimate 70s Blogathon with his review on Saturday Night Fever!
We are alternating our entries between our blogs. Remember to follow us both to not miss out on any of the entries!

Drew's Movie Reviews

It’s finally here! The Ultimate 70s Blogathon has begun! For the next several weeks, my co-host Kim, I, and many of our fellow film bloggers will be looking at some of our favorite films from the far out 70s. Check back regularly to see some of the great picks people have made. Earlier today, Kim reviewed the science-fiction horror classic, and one of my personal favorites, Alien, as part of the blogathon’s kickoff. Now it is my turn! Let’s get started, shall we?


Saturday Night Fever movie posterSynopsis
A Brooklyn teenager feels his only chance to succeed is as the king of the disco floor. His carefree youth and weekend dancing help him to forget the reality of his bleak life. (From IMDb)

Review
Since I both open and close the Ultimate Decades Blogathons that I co-host, my opening entry isn’t necessarily my favorite film from the theme decade, but rather…

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Ultimate 70s Blogathon Kick-Off: Alien (1979)

Ultimate 70s Blogathon officially kicks off today.

To get things started, my lovely cohost Drew from Drew’s Movie Reviews and I will be starting things off at both of our blogs today. To kick off the blogathon, I am reviewing Alien, a movie released nearly 40 years ago and started off a franchise that has been getting a revivial in the last few years. For that, it deserves its spot in this blogathon! For myself, this movie holds a significant spot as one of the first 70s film that I ever saw.

Lets check it out!

Alien (1979)

alien

Director: Ridley Scott

Cast: Sigourney Weaver, Tom Skerritt, Veronica Cartwright, Harry Dean Stanton, John Hurt, Ian Holm, Yaphet Kotto

After a space merchant vessel perceives an unknown transmission as a distress call, its landing on the source moon finds one of the crew attacked by a mysterious lifeform, and they soon realize that its life cycle has merely begun. – IMDB

Alien is a 1979 sci fi horror thriller directed by Ridley Scott. Everyone knows that but I honestly had no idea how to start off this review about such a popular movie. As much as it kicks off a franchise, the debate of whether this film or its sequel Aliens is better is almost inevitable. However, while both are very good in their own respects, Alien is one that has always got my heart. It really is quite iconic from both the perspective of its story, the atmosphere, the iconic female protagonist and its impeccably brutal alien Xenomorph, it hits a lot of elements perfectly.  Alien can sometimes feel slightly slower in its pacing but this also is where its tense thriller and horror-esque atmosphere is built so well.The darker environment and the mysterious mists here and there along with the foreign space they investigate create some rather creepy imagery right down to the epic face hugger scene and can only send chills down your spine.

alien

The predatory abilities of the Xenomorph is an unknown and as we follow the different characters and their different encounters, we learn a little more. Xenomorph is one of the outstanding parts of this film. Its a speciman to gain knowledge about and as it develops and transforms throughout the film, making a speechless villain have an incredible amount of presence both psychologically and physically.

Alien

A great villain needs to be met with someone worthy to fight them off amd here we have the femme fatale Ellen Ripley who really is the standout character in the movie. Everyone else just fills a spot but Sigourney Weaver’s role portrayal of Ellen Ripley is done so well. She’s tough and smart. The encounters are tense but she also knows how to feel quite real. You can almost say that she breaks the mold of the leading men and their badass role but taking on this tough lady role who fights for survival against this monster alien. As much as Ellen Ripley is a great character and the other supporting roles here as the other six crew members feel dispensable, there are still some decent performances delivered. Ellen Ripley played a voice of reason and the consequences of not listening to her eventually was what caused the disaster on the spaceship.

Revisiting older movies are tough to review. On one hand, its inevitable that some will not carry well over time especially sci-fi films because technology has changed so much over the years. Somehow, as much as technology changed and the tech here seems out of date along with some of the effects, Alien still carries itself really well. The horror moments with the face hugger and the Xenomorph are still creepy and believable. The ship feels real enough to be immersed in the events happening on the spaceship. Overall, Alien as a rewatch delivers itself really well and is still an immersive and thrilling watch and shows how before its times it was when it was released in 1979 with a bunch of unique elements that fit so well together.

Head over to Drew’s Movie Reviews to check out his review to kick off the Ultimate 70s Blogathon some time today!
For the rest of the blogathon, posts will be showing up alternate days between our blogs.
Remember to follow us to not miss out on any of the fantastic entries!

Announcement: Ultimate 70’s Blogathon!

Hello, my lovely friends!

Today is a special day! Drew from Drew’s Movie Reviews and I will be hosting our third blogathon this year! Following our past two year’s theme, we are continuing the Ultimate Decades. We went forward in time last year to the 90’s and now we’re going to the past as we dive into the 1970’s.

I’m excited to announce the Ultimate 70’s Blogathon!

Ultimate 70's blogathon

Why 1970s, you ask? 1970s had a lot of great films that came out. For starters, the second half of the decade saw the beginnings of some great franchises from being hunted by a giant lethal alien Xenomorph in Alien to being pumped up by Eye of the Tiger in Rocky. Of course it doesn’t stop there. The world was introduced to the frightening Michael Myers in Halloween and the shores of Amity Island was terrorized by a shark in Jaws. Of course, we can’t forget the more lighthearted movies that took us into a dancing and singing musical world in The Rocky Horror Picture Show which showed us how diverse Tim Curry’s acting is as he transformed into a mad scientist/transvestite as well as John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John experiencing a life-transforming love in Grease. And of course, we also got introduced to the Corleone family and their ruthless mafia ways in Godfather.

Just look at all those selections! I’m sure all of you have your reasons of what started your love for 70s movies whether you grew up with it or later was introduced by some iconic title. 70’s is a little before our time but we have found our love in 70’s film nonetheless and like previous years, we will be kicking off the blogathon with our choices.

For this blogathon, here’s our question for you: What 70’s movie do you love? What sparked your love for the 70’s? What movie do you think is a movie representative of the 70’s as a starting point? 

Ultimate 70’s Blogathon is quite simple like previous years. The rules are straight-forward: You can choose and review whichever movie you’d like as long as it was released in the 1970s. Preferably, it is a choice that inspired your love for this decade whether its one that you love watching over and over again or one that you grew up with or the movie that you simple love.

Ultimate 70’s Blogathon kicks off on February 12th, 2018. We have allocated 3 weeks to sign up and get us your posts. The deadline to send us your reviews is February 4th. However, we do fully acknowledge that everyone is busy so if you do need more time, just send us an email to tell us and we can plan accordingly. We will be posting it alternating between our two blogs so please remember to submit to us your review. If you do plan on posting it on your blog/website as well, do tell us and we will match up the posting day.

We really hope that you can participate! You can tell us whether you can participate in the comments below or send us an email at kim.tranquildreams@gmail.com and drewt510@gmail.com. We love to have your choice as a surprise so if you participate, please email us your selection as well. 

We’re looking forward to seeing all the choices and submissions! Feel free to use the banner above to show off at your sites! If you know anyone that might be interested in joining in, do spread the word! The more the merrier! 🙂