Ever since hearing about Robert Eggers’ The Witch at last year’s Sundance Film Festival, I’ve been waiting eagerly to see it. If you live in New York City, Los Angeles, Austin, or Detroit, you can catch the movie a few days early thanks to your friends at The Satanic Temple.
That’s right. The critically acclaimed horror film has the official backing of The Satanic Temple, with TST spokeswoman Jex Blackmore hailing the film a “transformative Satanic experience.” Blackmore noted in a statement that “The Witch examines theocratic patriarchy in microcosm, documenting the pathology of a religious hysteria that is still influential in politics today.”
The TST screenings kick off in NYC on 2/10, with subsequent screenings in LA on 2/12, Austin on 2/16, and in Detroit on a day TBD. I’m having trouble finding the actual locations and times for these screenings, but TST did launch the website satanic-revolution.com, which I assume is where the info will eventually be available. (If anything, you can sign the guestbook and declare yourself a witch. Have fun.)
A new trailer for The Witch was released earlier in the week, which you can check out below.
You can read Jex Blackmore’s full statement about The Witch below.
The Witch officially hits theaters on February 19th. Look for our review of the film that week.[via Den of Geek]
Jex Blackmore, National Spokesperson for The Satanic Temple & Director of the Detroit Chapter of The Satanic Temple
With the discipline of a historian and the voice of a rebel, award-winning filmmaker Robert Eggers celebrates the sociocultural roots of the witch as a consequence of parasitic, puritanical worldviews. The Witch examines theocratic patriarchy in microcosm, documenting the pathology of a religious hysteria that is still influential in politics today.
I speak to you as a Satanist, an individual who embraces her pariah status and actively challenges arbitrary authority in defense of personal sovereignty. To The Satanic Temple, Satan is a symbol of defiance, independence, wisdom and self-empowerment, and serves as an affirmation of natural existence.
As Satanists, we are ever mindful of the plight of women and outsiders throughout history who suffered under the hammer of theocracy and yet fought to empower themselves. This film provides context to a period of American history that is too often fetishized by those seeking to wield this hammer once again.
While the patriarchy makes witches of only the most socially vulnerable members of society, Eggers’ film refuses to construct a victim narrative. Instead it features a declaration of feminine independence that both provokes puritanical America and inspires a tradition of spiritual transgression. We are empowered by the narrative of The Witch: a story of pathological pride, old-world religious paradigms, and an outsider who grabs persecution by the horns. Efforts to oppress and demonize the heretic prove to be a path to destruction. The witch does not burn but rises up in the night.
The Witch is not only a powerful cinematic experience, but also an impressive presentation of Satanic insight that will inform contemporary discussion of religious experience. Yet, The Witch is more than a film; it is a transformative Satanic experience that, in its call to arms, becomes an act of spiritual sabotage and liberation from the oppressive traditions of our forefathers.
It is time to awaken. As we stand at the crossroads of history, let us confront the blind and self-righteous who persecute thought and reason. Let us rise up in celebration of our Satanic nature and embrace the embodiment of the witch. This is a new American era. Join us.
I realize that I may have struck a jokey tone throughout all this, but the philosophy of TST is sound and seems rather inclusive, all things considered:
The mission of The Satanic Temple is to encourage benevolence and empathy among all people. In addition, we embrace practical common sense and justice. As an organized religion, we feel it is our function to actively provide outreach, to lead by example, and to participate in public affairs wheresoever the issues might benefit from rational, Satanic insights. As Satanists, we all should be guided by our consciences to undertake noble pursuits guided by our individual wills. We believe that this is the hope of all mankind and the highest aspiration of humanity.