The Devil and Father Amorth (2017) Movie Script

At the time I made the film,
The Exorcist,
I had never seen an exorcism.
More than four decades later,
I witnessed the one
you are about to see.
You asked me earlier,
-if I was ever gonna do
anything else...
...about the devil,
-and you seem concerned...
...when you asked me that.
Why were you concerned?
People ought to stay away
from the subject as much
as possible.
The more you open yourself,
to thinking about this stuff
and you start feeling
about this stuff,
the more room you allow
for the supernatural
power of evil to come in.
There are more than
60 million people in Italy.
According to two
of the leading newspapers,
and the major
television channel,
500,000 Italians
see an exorcist every year.
This woman is one of them.
Her name is Christina.
She's 46 years old
and lives 200 miles
south east of Rome,
in a small mountain village.
She's an architect
that can't work.
She's said to be possessed
by the Devil.
Father Gabriele Amorth,
has been the exorcist
for the diocese of Rome
for 31 years.
He has exorcised Christina
eight times without success.
This will be her ninth.
In the fall of 1972,
I came to Georgetown,
here, in Washington D.C.,
to film The Exorcist.
The Exorcist is a novel
by William Peter Blatty,
inspired by an event
that took place
in 1949,
when Blatty was an undergraduate
here at Georgetown University.
Right now we are on the campus
of Georgetown University in
Washington D.C.
We're on the main campus,
right by the front,
and in one of those classrooms,
I listened to a Jesuit Priest.
He was teaching a
theology course, new testament.
Father Eugene Gallaghar
began to
go off on a case of
possession and exorcism and
that's where I first heard
about possession.
On this quiet little street,
in this quiet town called,
Cottage City, Maryland.
This is the house
where the 1949 case began.
Where Luther and family
whose 14 year old son
was said to be possessed.
He was examined by doctors
and psychiatrists,
who could not determine
the cause of his disturbing
And so, priests from
the Catholic Dioceses,
in Washington D.C. were
brought in to perform
a series of exorcisms
at this very house.
The boy was later transferred
to Alexian Brothers Hospital
in St. Louis,
where he was eventually
Bill Blatty believed in the
truth of this case when
he wrote his novel,
and later, his screenplay
of The Exorcist.
And so did I,
when I directed the film.
And lo and behold,
I then read it
in the Washington Post,
and I was
very excited about it.
And I thought,
wouldn't it be
absolutely marvelous
if one could write
a non-fiction account...
of this.
Provided it was authentically
paranormal and inexplicable.
What a tremendous re-affirmation
of faith that would be.
There would be a fantastic...
well, what are we waiting for?
many, many, many years later,
it all came back to me.
And I was determined
to write that story
but as non-fiction.
And I finally was able to
track down,
with great difficulty,
the original exorcist
in that particular case.
His name was,
Father William Bowden.
He's a Jesuit.
He was very eager to help me.
And apparently, a promise
of absolute silence
and confidentiality had
been given to the family
of the possessed boy.
And he asked that, that
be lifted because this was
a very very good cause.
It was very apostolic work
that was going to be done, and
I went to the family,
and they said no,
they wanted no part of it.
Now I was more convinced
than ever,
since they were not
publicity mongers,
going on Heraldo,
or whatever,
that this thing
really had substance to it.
And, he utterly galvanized me,
Father Bowden did, with one
sentence in his letter.
At the bottom, after explaining
how sorry he was
that he couldn't help me,
and after pleading with me,
"Please don't write about
this case".
"Don't tell anything
that I've told you."
He said, "One thing however
I can tell you,
"the case which I was involved
with was the real thing."
I had no doubt about it then,
I have no doubt about it now.
And that was all I needed.
This is the house at
36th and Prospect
in Georgetown
that we used as the exterior
of the McNeil house in the film.
Now, the house doesn't
look today the way it looked
back in 1972,
and that's because
we had to build a false front
from the end of this house
to the end of the fence
down there,
to bring the house closer
to the steps.
Now, on the second floor
of that false front
was the exterior
of Regan's bedroom,
from which Father Karras
could make his final leap.
These steps are just
a few feet away from the house.
They are now officially known
as, "The Exorcist Steps".
For me, the steps and Georgetown
are the spiritual home
of The Exorcist.
I've always been fascinated
by the nature of good and evil.
And the possibility of
demonic possession.
But the opportunity for me
to witness and film
an actual exorcism,
came about 45 years
after I had made the film.
And completely by accident.
Or was it providence?
Father Amorth,
in his first memoir,
wrote about The Exorcist film
and he said it was
his favorite movie.
I guess, of course.
He said that the, um,
special effects were
a little over the top,
but he said that
it helped people
to understand his work.
And so, when I wrote asking
if I could meet with him,
he immediately agreed.
At the age of 18,
Gabriele Amorth fought
his first battle against evil
when he joined
the Italian Resistance
against the fascist dictator,
and the Nazi alliance.
He was awarded the
Medal of Liberation by
the Italian Government.
But it was 10 years later,
before he found his calling
and was ordained a priest
in the society of Saint Paul.
Thirty years after that,
in 1986,
he became the chief exorcist
of Rome
and dedicated his life
to helping those he believed
were possessed.
Each morning, he would respond
to the hundreds of letters he
received every week
from around the world.
From those with
spiritual diseases.
And he became one of the most
beloved figures
in his native country.
He performed
his first exorcisms
at the Cathedral
of St. John Lateran.
At the complex know as the
Church of the Holy Staircase.
These 28 marble steps,
now covered in wood,
are the steps that led up
to Pontius Pilate's house.
They were brought to Rome
in the forth century
and they can only be climbed
on your knees.
Marian Luther climbed
these steps on his knees
and heard a revelation,
a voice saying,
"The just shall live by faith."
Through this door,
Father Amorth entered
a small private chapel
where he conducted
his exorcisms
until the noise drove away
the faithful.
In April of 2016,
I came to Rome to interview
Father Amorth
for a magazine.
At the end of our conversation,
I asked him if he might
ever allow me
to witness and film
an exorcism.
Permission to do this had never
been granted by the Vatican.
He took a moment
and then he said,
"Let me think about it."
A few days later,
I heard back from him.
He would allow me to film
Christina's ninth exorcism
on May 1st,
but, with no crew, no lights,
only a small video camera,
I had no idea
what to expect.
But before witnessing
Christina's exorcism,
I met a woman who had been
successfully exorcised
by Father Amorth.
This is her story.
[speaking Italian]
I first met Father Amorth
ten years ago, when my sister
need his help.
She was suffering
a spiritual disease.
He asked to see her
medical records.
He wanted to be sure it was
a spiritual problem,
not a psychological one.
I first realized there was
something wrong when I went with
a friend to a sanctuary.
When they began to celebrate
the Mass,
I started having unusual
I cried, my body shook...
and I fell into a trance.
She called and asked me to come
to her home as soon as possible.
She was out of control.
I started screaming like crazy.
Someone called the police.
The police came but they
wouldn't come in.
They were terrified to hear
me scream.
She showed extraordinary
And her body began to transform
into something that was not
Paolo told me I was slithering
on the floor...
speaking a strange language.
The fact that I was crawling on
the floor must have been
She looked like a wild animal.
And her belly was swollen
like a balloon about to burst.
And her strength was not
possible for a woman of
her size and age.
After many episodes, my brother
took me to Father Amorth.
When she first met
Father Amorth, she went into
an extreme panic state.
He told me to take her to a room
where his assistants were
That's where the first
exorcism took place.
Father Amorth was funny
and ironic.
He didn't frighten me.
He helped me understand what
was happening to me.
It took almost eight months.
The first exorcisms were
the most violent.
She had incredible strength.
It took four of us to hold
her down.
During the second exorcism,
Father Amorth had to tie her
to a bed.
During the last two exorcisms,
the intensity of her strength
was decreasing.
After her fourth exorcism,
Father Amorth told her
it was over.
She was liberated.
The moment he told me
I was liberated...
I felt relieved of an enormous
weight inside me.
After she was liberated, he
wanted to make sure I was okay.
Because sometimes the evil
spirit passes from one person
to another.
So he exorcised me.
It took him fifteen minutes,
and at the end, he told one
of his famous jokes:
"Compared to what I usually
deal with, you're bursting
with health."
Paolo stayed
in contact with Father Amorth
and began to assist him
with other exorcisms.
It was Paolo who recognized
Christina's symptoms
in this church.
We heard screams
in the church
during the celebration
of the Eucharist,
which possessed people
cannot tolerate.
She was in incredible pain
writhing on the floor.
Father Amorth asked me to meet
her and bring her to him.
Having moved from the
Church of the Holy Staircase,
Father Amorth continued
his work at his residence.
The home of the Polene priests.
Where on May 1st, 2016,
he invited me to witness
Christna's ninth exorcism.
Christina, why are you here
to see Father Amorth?
I wanted to be free of the evil
spirit and I was looking
for help.
I was treated by another priest,
but Father Amorth is the best
in hi field.
Do you believe
that you're possessed?
Not at first, but then things
happened that made me
believe it.
I kept putting it off until
I came to a point of no return.
Then God brought me
to Father Amorth.
Did you ever try to seek
doctors or psychiatrists?
The psychiatrists couldn't help
me, I had a spiritual disease.
Demonic possession can hide
behind other diseases.
I would have attacks, often on
dates related to Jesus...
A life of pain and suffering.
Cristina is possessed by
the devil.
The devil's power
is supernatural.
He speaks and acts through her.
Possessed people have
incredible knowledge.
They speak languages
they wouldn't know.
How can you be sure
that Christina is possessed?
I can only be sure when I
perform an exorcism
and provoke reactions that are
unique to a possessed person.
Father Amorth
begins every exorcism
by thumbing his nose
at the devil.
In the room
are Christina's family,
and other priests
to assist Father Amorth.
Pray for us Saint Joseph...
Padre Pio...
Padre Candido...
the Blessed Alberione...
In the name of Jesus
and the Virgin Mary...
Give us the power to fight
against the Devil.
Leave her! In the name of
the Father, the Son and the
Holy Spirit.
Stop it! No! No!
Hold her tight here, please.
Stay away from her!
Stop holding her.
God, vanquish this
ancient enemy.
Lord, repel the Devil's power.
With this holy oil, I anoint
your body and soul.
Holy Virgin... Archangels...
Saints... Heal Cristina.
May she receive God's grace
and be free from the evil one.
Free her from witchcraft,
black magic and Satanic Masses.
Break every tie with Satan
and his followers.
Free her from sin, envy,
jealousy, treachery and disease.
Never! Don't touch her!
She belongs to us!
Send the priest away!
I can't stand it!
Cristina, return to the church
where you belong.
She belongs to me!
I am Satan! Stop this!
The devil is guilty
in the eyes of God.
Surrender to the Word of God.
Surrender to the Virgin Mary.
Surrender to Jesus.
-Get out now
When did you possess her?
Answer me!
When did you possess her?
Evil spirit,
you are damned forever.
It's you who are damned!
I command you to leave her!
I am Satan!
Tell me your name.
How many are you?
We are legion!
In the name of God,
when are you going to leave?
Leave this daughter of God!
God condemns you, evil spirit!
She is mine!
She belongs to me!
We are armies! Armies!
The Virgin Mary will destroy
you, Satan!
Set her free!
In the name of the Father,
the Son and the Holy Spirit,
Do you need something
to drink?
How do you feel?
Are you still alive?
Let us all thank God.
Neil, what do you make
of what you've just seen?
Absolutely amazing.
So, there is a...
major force at work
within her somehow.
I don't know the underlying
origin of it
but there's an amazing force.
It's interesting to see
that she is not
separated from the environment,
she's not in a catatonic state.
She's responding to the priest.
It didn't appear
to be hallucinations.
She appeared to be engaged
in the process but resisting.
Yeah, it really looks
something authentic and real.
People who have very severe pain
sin syndromes, total body pain,
for some reason. It can be
even cancer, it could be other.
There is a treatment for it,
it says, "intervenes in the
they have still the pain
but they don't care about it.
So they can tolerate it.
It's the emotional aspect
of pain.
It is probably what she's
describing when she tells you,
total body pain.
It may not be really
physical pain that she feels
but she experiences
as physical pain.
Always she is, all the time,
these paroxysms of aggression.
I don't understand again
what she was saying exactly,
it's not necessarily directed
toward the priest or is it,
I'm not sure
but she is like
a caged animal in a sense.
Is this some kind
of brain disorder?
It looks like the state
that we call
Which is an agitated
disconnection from
normal behavior and
from the environment.
Illogical, often very
powerful and energetic.
Often requires restraint.
But delirium, you may see
the struggling,
you may see some shouting
and yelling but this powerful
guttural voice, that does seem,
that seems like it's coming
from somewhere else.
When you tell Cristina what she
did while she was possessed,
she says, "That wasn't me."
She doesn't even remember it.
The devil's assaults are not
constant. Sometimes they can
be brief.
And not recur for weeks
or months.
At other times, there can be
assaults on a daily basis.
And when these happen,
the person goes into a trance.
During the rest of her day,
she lives and acts normally.
But she has constant
physical or mental suffering.
Because she's still
in a frail state.
Even when assaults are absent,
her nervous system remembers
and therefore she continues
to suffer.
The day of the exorcism,
happened to be Father Amorth's
91st birthday.
He was happy, and so was I,
because it looked like
Christina was cured.
Ladies and gentlemen, thank you.
God bless you. I bless you.
Now you can go
bless yourselves.
Do you think she could have
been better helped by
brain surgery,
than this religious ritual?
I would say, unlikely.
-How man surgeries have you
performed? Brain surgeries?
More than 5,000
over the years.
Brain tumors,
traumatic brain injury,
ruptured brain aneurysms,
infections affecting the brain
and I haven't seen
this kind of...
this kind of consequence
from any of those disorders.
Are you prepared to say that
there's such a thing as
exorcism and
demonic possession?
Here's the point.
You have to believe it
in order to go through it.
If someone does not believe
that they are possessed,
-they will not do this...
-Yeah, yeah, but...
...but they will have an MRI,
they will see a psychiatrist,
they will
possibly, I don't know,
an operation...
But people are very much
context dependent.
I mean, you probably will not
have this in somebody who has
no religious background.
-Meaning that the religion
that they absorb,
the things they absorb,
they obviously change
their brain.
You're asking me if I believe
in exorcism,
I only look at it as
a behavioral phenomenon.
If I were a Catholic priest
okay, or a Jewish Rabbi,
I may have
a different explanation.
Can I categorize it?
Can I know how to treat it?
So, something is happening
to her, it's clear.
But maybe she puts into it
the religious context
in which she grew up.
'Cause they believe obviously
they know what's wrong with her.
She's possessed by the devil.
Are you religious at all,
Oh, come on, you're gonna ask me
this type of question?
I thought this was about this,
not about me.
no, but what is your thought
about god, for example.
I do believe that there is
a limit to human understanding.
And there's really a limit
behind this limit,
I'm willing to place an entity
called god.
Dr. Fried shared
with me this three-dimensional,
color coded image
of the human brain.
The red section
controls movement.
The green controls vision.
The light blue and dark blue
sections control language.
That yellow section
is a tumor
in the left temporal lobe.
This tumor can cause seizures
that result in hallucinations
and language problems.
Is it possible that this
could be the cause of what
we call,
demonic possession?
I've never seen anything
like that before.
But I've only practiced
neurology for 35 years.
I believe that these are
behaviors that are generated
in her brain.
How it's done and what it is...
can't say.
In patients who have seizures
that emanate from
the temporal lobe,
one of their manifestations
in between the seizures is that
they can become
hyper religious.
Uncertain what the cause
and effect is here but that's a,
that is a coincidental linkage
between those two phenomena.
You don't think that you could
take this woman into the normal
procedures in neurology
and cure this affliction?
Only if this proved to be
some kind of a seizure,
which I don't think
it really is.
Do you have any belief
in exorcism
as a possible treatment?
I have an open mind
about these things
because I have seen plenty
of things that have occured
during my career and my lifetime
that were not explainable at the
beginning and have
rational basis now.
There are plenty of things
that we don't understand
that are real.
For example, radio activity.
Right, we can't see it,
we don't know what it is.
Once it was revealed
that this exists
and the good and the harm
that it can do,
that was a whole other
field of science.
Are you open to the possibility
that an exorcism could relieve
Well, let's make it analogous
to a person who believes in
Works with a psychiatrist.
Takes the advice,
suggestions, input,
no medications, nothing else,
it's just
two individuals working on
a problem that one of them has.
If the patient is open and
willing to participate,
I think the benefit
can be realized by that person.
Through exorcism?
Through that process
of interaction.
If we don't understand it,
it doesn't mean
it doesn't exist.
Given our scientific
and medical backgrounds,
do we count it as
the possibility
of there being something that's
spiritual or supernatural
in nature.
It takes the form
of disturbed behavior.
When someone says your supposed
to do something, the right thing
to take care of yourself,
so she's doing
the right thing by her family
and everyone else
to try to get herself better.
...hurting her,
it could be helping her.
Would it better for her
to see a psychiatrist in Rome?
The question is,
what kind of psycho-therapy
or intervention does she need.
And they have a certain idea
that the way you deal with this
is by getting rid of that
completely negative
side of her experience.
Perhaps in the case
of some people,
getting rid of it completely
in this ritualistic way
is quite good.
Well, what do you think this is?
Unconscious fraud?
No. No. No...
So... Okay, this is called
the dissociative reaction or
-Dissociative Trance Disorder.
-Dissociative Trance Disorder.
-DSF and trance in possession
disorder in ICD.
So, it's a recognized...
It's a recognized diagnosis
It has some cultural variation
but it's basically
the same thing.
She is doing something
and everybody is participating
in a ritual
that they all agree is
the right way
to look at the world.
Part of what may work
particularly well
for some people in that setting
is that everybody in the room,
they actually believe
this is the framework
of reality.
This is what is it
and we must do this.
The Placebo Response.
The gaining of the idea that
if you believe something to
be likely to work,
the more likely to work.
I have a issue right now
on my unit,
who's similar to this
in some ways.
She says she's possessed
by the devil. She speaks
in a bizarre voice,
she hasn't attacked anyone but
she comes from
a religious background.
It's Protestant,
rather than Catholic.
But it might be more the
Charismatic Pentecostal
So it would be fit,
she has a history of trauma,
and I can say what we're doing
for her on the unit, is
we're treating it
with medication. We're
giving her psycho-therapy,
creating a safe environment.
We're seen her before,
this runs its course
and she gets better.
And we don't take a position
on during the treatment on,
is this really Satan
bothering you,
or is this you really being
tormented by your illness.
The person is expressing
a pathology
that is understood
as possession.
She understands it
as possession.
She group
understands possession.
Our field of psychiatry
can understand it
a possession
just on the virtue
of what she is presenting.
The phenomenon,
without having to take
any kind of stance
on whether there actually are
demons, spirits, because
this kind of possession
is attributed to
Arabic spirits,
Jewish dead people
Christian dead people,
forces, animals...
all over the world,
there are many different
kinds of possessions.
She just has a certain belief
in the origin of the possession.
It was a revelation to me,
that the psychiatric diagnosis
of Christina's condition
is recognized
around the world
as demonic possession.
I've never met anyone that
I would say, "Oh that person
needs to be exorcised."
I think that phenomenon exists.
I think it's extremely rare
but I think it exists.
And I'll say this,
speaking of auxiliary Bishop
of this region...
I get people writing to me,
concerned about a loved one,
concerned about a son
or a daughter.
Somebody concerned
about himself.
I got these strange things
going on,
what should I do?
So, I get those letters
in this very place.
So, I acknowledge
the reality of it.
Would you have any misgivings
recommending a person in
extreme spiritual disease
to an exorcist?
Or would you recommend
they see a psychiatrist?
I think in our case today,
we would want to eliminate
the physiological,
the psychological and in fact
what happens in a church,
we have teams of people that
will look in a particular case
and that team will involve
usually a physician,
usually a psychologist,
psychiatrist, etc.
and a priest.
But, the natural has to be
eliminated before we get
to the supernatural.
If I started crawling
up the walls...
-Yeah. Yeah.
-And, or, moving around on the
ground like a snake...
-What would you do?
-I'd call the police.
If I tell you that someone
has within them...
they are possessed by a demon,
what goes through your mind?
I think what goes through
my mind is that there are
more things in heaven and earth
that are dreamed of
in your philosophy.
This is a strange world
that we live in
and to a degree we can know it
and control it and we can
analyze it,
but there's a dimension
to this world that is strange.
And beyond our capacity
to control.
This person's possessed
by a demon.
Does that make sense in
scientific terminology?
Probably not.
But having walked through
the scientific, all the way,
do I come to a limit
where I say,
maybe there's something beyond
what I can manage here.
And I should be open to that
if it manifests itself.
Can you accept
the idea
of demonic possession
of a...
a demon, a devil, Satan
taking over the soul
of another human being.
That's not the devils
taking over your soul,
that's the devil,
or whatever you wanna call it...
seizing your body.
The way they take over
the soul
is by tempting you to sin.
That's how they get you
'cause you're using your
freewill to do evil.
What is the conslusion
you came to
finally when you completed
your last book.
How do you have the universe
that we've got with so much
evil in it?
When you got a good god
and a magnificent god,
then how does this evil occur?
I believe that a trans-human...
power of evil exits.
Do you believe that there is
inherent evil
in all of us, let's say.
Evil is like a shadow,
it's like a parasite.
So, it is never inherent evil.
The devil is good
that's to say in his being,
in his intelligence,
in his will,
in his...
ontological integrity,
the devil is good.
But the goodness
is become warped.
If a person does not believe
and yet they manifest
these symptoms,
can they be exorcised?
Well, I wouldn't say
in the full sense of the term,
doing a full exorcism.
Someone is really possessed
by a dark power,
their own personality
has been kind of,
put on hold with
sermon suspense.
And what's being addressed
is the demon within them.
Speaking to the devil,
I mean, heck,
people like Father Amorth,
maybe can do that.
I would never dare to do it.
I'm not there spiritually.
I think that's
a very dangerous thing.
What did you say?
-I wouldn't do it.
-Wouldn't do what?
Speak to the devil.
-I mean, if I--
-As in, an exorcism?
I don't think I'd be
any good at it.
I wouldn't wanna do it.
-Why not?
I think it's dangerous ground.
You gotta be really really holy.
It's in the scriptures.
-I know but Jesus... absolutely.
-Jesus exorcised demons.
But that's why the church is
very careful to choose very
holy people.
-And you're not?
I don't think
I'm ready for that.
I'd be afraid.
How much higher can you be
than the Bishop...
No, I'm not joking, I'm...
I'm really impressed with
your saying that.
-But, you mean there's
a higher level of spirituality?
-I do.
Yeah, you wanna find someone
who is really at a higher level
of spiritual attainment
and that's a dicey business.
I mean, getting in
close quarters with the devil.
-This why...
-Well, because he's the devil...
-You have the power of Jesus.
I do indeed, but,
the church wants someone
who is really personally holy
to wield that power
most effectively.
So you think it would have
been possible for the demon to
enter you?
Sure it's possible.
I think the much more
Is it a part of your
belief system?
Sure. I mean it's possible.
Has it ever occured to you
that all of this work that
you've done
could expose you to possession?
The year I was
finishing off,
The Prince of Darkness,
I had a attack of
serious depression.
and it seems to be that
the fact that all the
evil forces you know...
it wasn't possession,
it was just...
one of the causes of depression.
But it was certainly very
depressing to work with evil
all the time, you know.
So, I had this very
serious depression and um,
that's why I say to people
don't concentrate on the devil,
I did it and I
probably wouldn't do it again.
Concentrate on the good,
concentrate on god,
concentrate on the positive
and don't think that much
about the evil side.
What you said to me
is one of the most interesting
statements I have ever heard
from a man of your
position and standing.
Which is, I don't think
I'm ready to deal with
the devil.
No, I'd be afraid of it.
I'd be afraid of it.
I need a lot more spiritual
training and a lot more
spiritual maturity.
No, and I don't mean that
in some flip way.
-I understand...
-I'm already a material person
I don't think...
I think you need to be really
at a high level of spiritual
to enter into the list with
the devil.
Before everyone left,
Christina's family asked
for her father
to be blessed by Father Amorth.
It's okay now. Let's pray
for your papa.
It was a shocking moment.
Christina was not cured.
Once again she fell
into a trance state.
When her mother
sat for her blessing,
it only got worse.
The man
in the foreground
is Christina's boyfriend.
It seemed to me that
her reactions were even
more violent than before.
This is an actual exorcism.
It's different from
all the movies.
This is not fiction.
It was harrowing to witness.
There are many people
who suffer like Christina.
From what they believe
is the same affliction.
But where does
this come from?
Is this really
the random invasion
of an external evil force?
And then suddenly
it was over.
But for how long?
Father Amorth
had taken sick,
and was in the hospital.
But I made an appointment
to meet with
Christina in Rome.
To do a more in-depth
interview with her.
She called my
line producer Francesco,
and rescheduled the meeting
to a small town.
200 miles south-east of Rome
called Alatri.
Alatri is an historic village
perched on a hill
distant mountains.
The central part
of the village
is surrounded by
massive Etruscan walls,
pieced together
without morder.
Like a giant jigsaw puzzle.
The narrow alleyways
and Cobblestone streets
are lined with small houses.
Many of them are
adorned with oil paintings
of the Saints.
This is a religious town
in an old-world way.
We had to walk about a mile
upto the top of the hill.
To the acropolis
where the meeting
was to take place.
Within it is the Cathedral.
Considered a sacred place.
We were to meet
Christina in the park,
in front of the
12th Century basilica.
We arrived on time.
But Christina wasn't there.
And so we waited.
It was a 120 degrees
in the shade.
Francesco called Christina
on her cell phone.
She answered quickly
sounding angry.
"Where are you?"
She screamed.
"We're at the park,"
Francesco answered.
"Where are you?"
"I'm where
I told you I'd be."
"At Santa Maria Maggiore.
The church
in the town square."
I didn't take
my camera inside.
So this is my memory
of what happened.
On July 4th, 2016.
When Francesco and I
entered the church,
it was freezing cold inside
and we were trapped
in a living nightmare.
Christina was screaming.
She slithered on the floor
in a cheap plastic chair.
Pulling her boyfriend
Davide with her.
He tried to hold her around
the waist and throw.
"Give us back your film!"
He shouted at me.
"No! I want it shown,"
she screamed
in the voice of the demon.
I was terrified.
Davide stared at me,
"If you don't give it
back to us,
we'll kill you.
We'll find your family
and we'll kill you all!"
It was the first time anyone
had threatened my life.
Francesco and I
left the church.
Left Alatri.
For a half hour,
neither of us said a word.
The sweat and the fear
were clinging to us,
all the way back to Rome.
At the end of July, 2016,
before he could perform
Christina's 10th exorcism,
Father Amorth contracted
pneumonia while he was
in the hospital.
Two months later, he died.
Thousands of people
came from all over Italy
to his funeral.
We are grateful to Father Amorth
for the good he did in the
name of Christ.
In 1991, Father Gabriele
gathered a group of exorcists
from around the world to Italy.
Some of them are with us
He once told me he could not
wait to reach heaven,
so he could beat the devil
with a cane.
When he passed away...
I had a lot of
different feelings.
I wouldn't call it pain. It was
like when you lose someone
close to you.
But I didn't feel bad that this
person who helped me so much
is gone.
It's like he's still here.
I don't think he's gone.
I hope to see you.
Will you tell, Father, "I hope
to see you on the 30th."
He was the most
spiritual man I ever met.
Like everyone who knew him,
I'll never forget him.
He enriched my life.
But what about Christina?
As of this moment,
Christina's suffering
I've reached out to her
without success.
Friends in Italy tell me,
she's continued
to pursue exorcism
with local priests.
But Father Amorth was
in a class by himself.
Like the doctors,
I can't tell you exactly
what's wrong with Christina.
My own belief,
is that there is a far deeper
dimension to the universe.
We know there is evil.
There is also good.
And if there are demons,
there must be angels.