If there’s one thing I hate, it’s a movie misrepresenting Satanism in order to give it a bad name. As far as horror movies go, it’s not a very prolific category, and many of them make me terribly angry. This is because the majority of Satanic movies are lengthy and take forever to get to the action, which usually consists of people drawing pentagrams and lighting candles in an attempt to be ‘spooky.’ But really, if you look at Anton LaVey and his Church of Satan, it’s about embracing yourself as you are and not letting other bring you down. It’s about showing kindness to those who deserve and not wasting it on assholes. It’s about mental, physical, and emotional gratification through indulgence rather than denying yourself what you most want.
In reality, most claims of Satanic cults are fabrication added to stories in order to frighten people into behaving themselves. It’s how people can explain true evil – Dave didn’t kill all those people because there’s a chemical imbalance in his brain making him a raging lunatic; he killed them because he was performing a Satanic ritual. But that doesn’t make a good movie, so instead, we get movies like House of the Devil, where some stupid college student goes out of her way to take a suspicious sounding babysitting job off campus, and winds up in the middle of a pentagram drawn in blood with disfigured old people chanting in Latin around her. That’s not Satanism; that’s just lame.
With that being said, the first words of the movie House of the Devil appear on screen warning, “In the 1980s, over 70% of American adults believed in the existence of abusive Satanic cults.” There are no accurate statistics today about actual Satanic cults because of an overabundance of claims of abusive Satanism and an underabundence of evidence, which tend to result in witch hunts.
It’s a real problem, to which the Church of Satan has issued this statement, “…Satanism isn’t about taking drugs, and it isn’t about harming animals or children. Unlike many religions and philosophies, Satanism results and exalts life… it is very un-Satanic to take any creature’s life against its will.” So if you’re going to make a movie about weirdo cult killers, calling them Satanic just give you a so-called “spooky” wall to hide behind so you don’t need to go into details about the cult beliefs and relationships, which actually would make a better movie. Someone go make that movie, and let us all be frightened rather than just angry.