|Rate an exorcist|
Movie: "The Exorcist" (1973)
Exorcists: Father Lankester Merrin and Father Damian Karras, Catholic priests (played by Max Von Sydow and Jason Miller, respectively).
Dilemma: The mother of all demonic possession movies finds 12-year-old Regan MacNeil (Linda Blair) taken over by the devilish Pazuzu, who makes her utter profane language, defile her own body and violently lash out at others. Father Merrin and Father Karras grapple with this powerful demon to save the girl before he utterly destroys her. Their adversary is certainly well-versed in deceit and manipulation and is even able to imitate voices of people they know, which he uses to wage psychological warfare on his devout foes.
Performance: Despite Merrin's age and heart condition and Karras' struggle with his faith, the duo take on Regan's spiritual and bodily captor with plenty of gusto. Up against rattling objects, a levitating bed and nasty projectile vomiting, Merrin and Karras stay steadfast and true, even as they face their own fears. Spoiler alert: Both men pay the ultimate price for their involvement, the former dying first and leaving the overwhelmed young priest to find a way to defeat Pazuzu on his own. It's collectively their finest hour but also their last stand.
Rating: Five stars for kicking demon butt and sacrificing themselves.