The Ninth Configuration
I recently watched the Blu-ray edition of William Peter Blatty’s ‘The Ninth Configuration’. It’s a very strange and somewhat disturbing experience. Recommended.
Mark Kermode spoke about it a few years ago. 1
a breathtaking cocktail of philosophy, eye-popping visuals, jaw-dropping pretentiousness, rib-tickling humour and heart-stopping action. From exotically hallucinogenic visions of a lunar crucifixion to the claustrophobic realism of a bar-room brawl, via such twisted vignettes as Robert Loggia karaoking to Al Jolson and Moses Gunn in Superman drag, Blatty directs like a man with no understanding of, or interest in, the supposed limits of mainstream movie-making. The result is a work of matchless madness which divides audiences as spectacularly as the waves of the Red Sea, a cult classic that continues to provoke either apostolic devotion or baffled dismissal 20 years on.
There is also a book available here.
Reviewed by Mark Kermode, British Film Institute - Sight and Sound, July 1999 issue ↩