Thursday, October 05, 2006

The Omen (or How Satan Fucked Up the Apocalyse)

I rented "The Omen" today, and before I start bitching about it, let me say I still basically enjoy it even after who-knows-how-many years. Now on to the bitching.

When I was little and first saw this film* I thought, "Wow! Satan sure is unstoppable in this movie. He kills everyone who opposes him." As an adult, I realize that Satan does indeed kill all of his enemies...but only clumsily, and usually long after it matters. First, there's the nanny, driven to hideous and public suicide to clear the way for the evil governess who will shepherd Damien (the AntiChrist) through his diabolic childhood. Were I the Father of Lies, I'd have arranged for a nice, non-conspicuous traffic accident, something no one would question, instead of an unforgettably horrific death just after the cutting of Damien's fifth birthday cake. Then there's the fallen priest, who gets speared by a lightning rod just after he tells Gregory Peck (foster father to the AntiChrist) everything he needs to know to unravel the tangled web of lies surrounding the birth of his son. Isn't killing him at that point like putting on the condom in the cab ride home? It's bad enough that Satan takes out foster mother Lee Remick to prevent her from having a baby she'd intended to abort anyway, but what makes it worse is that he has to subcontract the job to a five-year-old with a tricycle. Finally, there's the photographer who is fantastically beheaded by a pane of glass...after he's helped Peck get hold of the clutch of sacred daggers needed to put an end to Beelzebub Junior.

Are you seeing a pattern here? Satan's good at causing deaths, but he makes a cat's cradle out of scheduling them. Hell, come to think of it he isn't very good causing them either; remember, it's not the Prince of Darkness who balks Peck in the end, but the good old London PD and their trusty sidearms. I never bought into that Revelations stuff, but even if I did "The Omen" has shown me that Satan's no more likely to bring about the end of the world than Daffy Duck.

*I'm not very easily frightened and never was, so as a child I was allowed to watch all the stuff kids weren't supposed to watch. I saw "The Omen", "The Exorcist", "Audrey Rose" and others of that ilk with nary a bad dream.


Anonymous Zoe said...

Happy Birthday! :)

11:19 AM  

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