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Monday, October 28, 2013

Sean Kelly

360 Screenings gets Demonic for Second Halloween Event

This past weekend, 360 Screenings held their second Halloween event, which was held at the Ontario Heritage Centre in downtown Toronto.  I was disappointed to have missed last year’s Halloween event, which focused on 28 Days Later, because the date conflicted with the Toronto After Dark Film Festival.  However, the growth of 360 screenings over the last year has resulted in them adding additional shows over the course of the weekend.  As such, I was able to schedule myself in and check out the Saturday evening event, taking place the day after Toronto After Dark concluded.

exorcist5

This was the second, of the four, 360 Screenings events I went to, in which I had a pretty good idea beforehand what the surprise film selection would be.  Indeed, it did not take long for me to realize that I was correct in guessing that the film selection was William Friedkin’s The Exorcist.  The the theatrics of the event began outside, in which protestors walked along the line – a reference to the film shoot that Chris MacNeil was participating in.  There was also a beggar in the line, who I wasn’t fully sure was an actor, until I saw a similar character in the film, later in the evening.

As you climb up the stairs into the main room, a guy lying on the floor would ask “What’s your daughter’s middle name?”  The main room featured a large bed in the middle, which was obviously going to play a factor later in the night.  There was also a defaced religious statue in the corner and a window with curtains that mysteriously kept blowing.  An interesting feature was a Confession Wall, where attendees can write their secrets on cards and hang it up for all to see.  Going around the different rooms, you would find a doctor giving examinations, a round table of medical experts (which you can participate in), and a dark room with a couple of Ouija boards, which attendees were invited to try out.  The latter was actually the most creepy element for me, since I’m a bit of a superstitious person and Ouija boards truly freak me out.

The main room also had a make-up table, where attendees can have facial wounds applied.  This also played a practical purpose, since it allowed the actress playing Regan MacNeil, who was affectively creepy over the course of the night, to put on a possessed appearance before a re-enactment of the exorcism scene was held on the bed in the middle of the room.  This signalled the start of the film screening, which was held in an adjacent room.

Overall, it was an effectively creepy night and I look forward to seeing what 360 Screenings puts on next.

Here is a gallery of photos from the event:

Sean Kelly

About Sean Kelly -

Sean Patrick Kelly is a self-described ├╝ber-geek, who has been an avid film lover for all his life. He graduated from York University in 2010 with an honours B.A. in Cinema and Media Studies and he likes to believe he knows what he’s talking about when he writes about film (despite occasionally going on pointless rants).