What's it about? This 1922 Scandinavian film examines the history of witchcraft during Middle Ages.
It also theorizes that many of the innocent accused suffered from mental illness, which in unenlightened times would be mistaken for devil worship and demonic possession. Visually and thematically it was light years ahead of its time.
Why is it appropriate? Although it's a documentary, director Benjamin Christensen included dramatic reenactments of the nightmarish persecution the accused suffered at the hands of Inquisitors.The effects are more akin to a horror film than documentary, and even ninety years later the visuals feel bold and captivating. This would be an ideal film to project in the background of a gathering. It's something that you might not notice at first, yet as it progresses you'll find yourself drawn to its stark imagery. The second vignette in particular, with its depiction on the commonly held superstitions surrounding witchcraft and the devil, are stunning. From Black Masses, grave robbing, torture and possessed nubile nuns, Haxan is a black and white wet dream for genre fans that want to feel a bit scholarly. From Christensen as a towering Satan terrifying a group of monks to witches flying through the night skies, Haxan is a work of beauty that should be seen by anyone claiming to be a horror fan.