Genius marketing alert! Never one to shy from a headline-grabbing opportunity, the Satanic Temple (not to be confused with the Church of Satan) has teamed up with upcoming chiller The Witch to present screenings in four cities, as well as issuing a proclamation showering praise upon the film:

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Set in 17th century Puritan New England, ​the film “departs from the victim narrative” of witchcraft and stands as a “declaration of feminine independence,” [TST National Spokesperson Jex Blackmore] explains. “We are empowered by the narrative of The Witch: a story of pathological pride, old­world religious paradigms, and an outsider who grabs persecution by the horns.” It’s a theme that resonates with TST, best known for their activist efforts to ensure plurality in what they see as an increasingly theocratic America.

Blackmore furthers her point in a note posted on the homepage of The Satanic Revolution, a site set up especially for the TST-Witch collaboration that’s also a platform for the group’s issues (including women’s reproductive rights and black cat rescue):

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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.

Without spoiling anything, we can tell you this: we’ve seen the film, and it’s creepy, jolting, and all-around fantastic. So that’s reason enough to check out these screenings (though more info does require “signing” the provided digital Book of Satan), which are being held in New York City, Los Angeles, Austin, and Blackworth’s home of Detroit. But if you don’t live in those cities, or if you’re not quite ready to take the plunge into a full-on embrace of the Dark Lord, the movie opens everywhere February 19.

[The Mary Sue and Indiewire]

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Top image: photo by Rafy, courtesy of A24