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Evil at the Movies

Bless the Child and Ouija reviewed by Lyle J. Arnold, Jr.
If you are prone to become overwhelmed by ruthless evil, be it natural or occult, do not watch the film Bless the Child. Having worked 30+ years in the prison and police fields and seen untold evil, I am not one of those persons. Therefore, when I first watched the movie in 2008, I was impressed with something one rarely sees from Hollywood, a film with something authentically Catholic about it.

God bless the child

A film replete with depictions of evil that really exist

So impressed I was that I checked out of the library the novel from which the film was created, same title, authored by Cathy Cash Spellman. After the first 90-some pages, the story began to reveal New Age characteristics, so I returned the book mostly unread. The film, however, retained a Catholic line regarding the presence of good and evil in life and the choices each person must make.

One mistake, however, with a very short scene at the end, where the beautifully clad nuns in traditional habits collectively voiced a Novus Ordo ejaculation, “Lord, hear our prayer.” Hollywood always takes advantage of the authentically Catholic traditional nuns and priests to make its points, but here it forgot that traditional religious say their prayers in Latin.

One thing you find throughout the entire film is a graphic and horrific overlay of demonic figures. The plot is very straightforward, an attempt by followers of Satan to kill a child that is on the road to becoming a saint. Cody, the child, has the potential to help many persons and lead them to God and the Devil cannot bear that. Although most of the reviews about the film are favorable, the 2004 “Movie & Video Guide” gave the movie the worst possible account: “This film veers wildly from the promising to the ludicrous.”

I was reminded of this film when I read the recent report exposing the evil of the Catholic Campaign for Human Development (CCHD). What caught my eye was the CCHD’s similarity to Bless the Child, only here we have a universal evil organization (seeking the death of the child by promoting abortion) masquerading under the title of Catholic. In Bless the Child, good is good, and evil is evil, and quite apparently so.

Not so, today. What should be good (a Catholic organization) is in fact promoting evil aims (a socialist leftist agenda, abortion, contraception, homosexual rights etc). So, the man of the street is left without an honest guide: we are sheep without shepherds, wandering astray and in many cases actually being led astray by those who should be guarding us.

heath ledger dark  knight

Ledger entered too deeply into the dark character of the Joker in The Dark Knight

I opened this article with the admonishment for people not to see the film if they have a tendency to get emotionally upset at the sight of evil. It is an important warning, because movies about the occult and preternatural have multiplied today, attracting the innocent and not so innocent alike.

Be warned, this is not a world to dabble it. It can kill you. The infamous death of actor Heath Ledger was rightly attributed to Ledger's descent into evil. He told a reporter that the only way he could act was to climb inside the skin of the person he was playing. Six months before the opening of Ledger's hit film, The Dark Knight, he was found dead from an “accidental” overdose of prescription drugs.

What his fans later learned is that Ledger, age 28, immersed himself into the dark world of the Joker, the Dark Knight character he portrayed in the film. His personal diary, found after his death, revealed how deeply he had entered the twisted mind of the Joker and how disturbed it left him. (1)

Ouija’s evil influence

I was reminded of the dangers of entering the occult world when I read some comments of readers on the new film Ouija, about a group of friends who try to contact the spirit of a deceased friend, engage a devil, become obsessed with the game and continue to play even when it ends with deaths.

ouija game movie

The 'game' turns serious when a devil responds

The comments were revealing. One girl warned, “Don’t mess with it. You are inviting a demonic entity into your home and you don’t know what it’s capable of. I’m speaking from experience.” Another comment from a man: “Never use that board. It’s not a game. Once you use it, it turns you into a medium and you become a portal to Hell.”

Another warning: “I know most people that see this movie are going to run out and buy a Ouija Board. DON’T!!!! It’s not cool or exciting. It is the act of dabbling into dangerous powers.” A young man warned: “The board is a real thing. Me and a few friends played with a Ouija board five years back and a few months after, strange things started to happen. Objects would get moved. I could hear voices, see shadow people and lately I have even been scratched. Whether you believe me or not, please don’t make the same mistake I did.”

After reading these comments, I pondered what getting too close to evil can do to some people. I recalled how one day, my wife and I had lunch with a fellow officer and his wife, and everything seemed completely normal. The next day that officer shot himself in the head. Who knows what was going on in his mind or his life to drive him to this despair and what caused it?

Friedrich Nietzsche once said, “Whoever fights monsters should see to it that in the process he does not become a monster. And when you look into an abyss, the abyss also looks into you.” Nietzsche in fact became crazy, suffered a mental collapse and died at the age of 55: The abyss had looked into him….

In today’s world, where the abyss of evil has surfaced and become part of everyday life, we have all the more need to take precautions against looking too long or hard at it, and all the more reasons to turn with confidence to Our Lady, asking her protection against all the occult forces, which are increasingly present.

  1. "Inside Heath Ledger’s private diary,” Mail online, May 31, 2013;
Posted November 21, 2014
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