BeetleMilk's Favorite Movies about The Occult
A fact that I've always found interesting is that while many see the Occult as a source of inspiration and learning, and alternate path to the mainstream ones laid out across the eons - there's been an ongoing campaign against Occult subjects in Hollywood. Being as such, none of these films really cast their respective subjects in a positive way. A lot of this, I think, comes from a simple lack of understanding over the years.
With that said, it's entertainment, and the individuals who created them had absolutely no obligation to cast the subject matter in any way but what their own artistic vision allowed for. I think we can agree that there's a lot of spooky elements to any religion or philosophy (Think about it for a second. Surviving death? Going to either happy place or a place with hellfire? What about purgatory? Chilling with a bunch of ghosts in a waiting room? Fuck that, let me sleep, I'm tired.). Please keep in mind that none of these movies are for kids, or for people easily offended or grossed out.
1. The Exorcist - It's not the first, by any measurement, but this movie made like three generations shit their pants. Today's effects, for all of their positive elements, do not fuck with people as hard as Linda Blair violating herself with a crucifix. The plot, which you likely know, is that a little girl was possessed by a demon. It was loosely based on a real life exorcism of a little boy, and I do mean loosely. It also shined a bright light on exorcisms, which is a very interesting occupation. I don't know if y'all know this, but Catholics who do exorcisms have to essentially get certified due to danger. There's a great book on the subject, "The Exorcist's Handbook". It's a lot more involved than it looks and a fascinating subject to get into.
2. Hereditary - Full disclosure: This movie fucked with my head. As a guy with books on demonology lying around everywhere, a movie about what would happen if a demon decided to really fuck with us really got to me. I know people who thought it was silly, but it made me a believer. That same creative team made another movie, Midsommer, which I refuse to watch. It cut DEEP. Anyway, the plot of this movie is that a demon, King Paimon, has followers on Earth and this causes problems with their unwitting families. This movie is DARK. I can't say that it gives a strong understanding of demonology after seeing it, but seeing that decapitated head will probably put you off of your next meal. The ants, man, the ants *shudders*.
3. The Omen - Another classic, that was remade not too long ago. This movie tells the story of the AntiChrist. Before I go into the movie itself, I want to give some context on the AntiChrist. Firstly, most beliefs do not hold that there is one. the Bible classifies anyone who rejects Jesus as an "antichrist". Almost any modern preacher describes it as one person, usually whoever they don't like in the moment. This is fundamentally incorrect. Additionally, the idea that the AntiChrist is born of a jackal is a mistranslation. A closer translation is "Dragon". So, this movie shouldn't bother you too much unless dragons start to exist, but then we'd be hearing trumpets and seven seals will be broken... anyway, I digress. The movie takes place when a woman gives birth to a kid who dies shortly after. The father is an ambassador, so they swap out the kid. This kid, Damien, is the AntiChrist. A bunch of weird shit starts happening, you know the rest. Eventually they go dig up his actual mother... a jackal. Disappointingly, not a dragon. It's a good popcorn flick.
There are many more, but I wanted to stay with more serious ones. Movies like The Craft and The Witch keep it going, maybe I'll talk about them one of these days. Until then, stay tuned for the next blog, which will spotlight some of the talented artists that are part of the BeetleCvlt community (That's not a typo. You'll see)!