• Kelly M. Hudson

Damien Vs. Jesus!


Damien (Sam Neill) is a grown man now, vying for the position of ambassador to Great Britain, the post his father once held before trying to murder Damien for being the real son of Satan. He’s amassed a group of secretive followers, all ready to do his bidding. In the meantime, a strange three-star formation is converging in the night skies, and this means, according to ancient lore, that the Second Coming of Christ is imminent. This is, of course, a grave threat to Damien and his satanic interests. A local British reporter falls for him and Damien adopts her son as one of his own, all while a group of renegade priests plot the death of the Antichrist using those same daggers that others have tried to employ but failed at time and again. Things get suitably apocalyptic in the world and finally there is a confrontation between Damien and the Son of God. Will Satan win, or will God reign glorious and supreme?

The third time is not the charm for this series, but the final entry in the original trilogy isn’t a bad movie at all. The Final Conflict has many fine moments, but honestly, the opening kill is so spectacular that the movie never really recovers from that “Oh, wow” moment. Neill is excellent as the son of Satan, emoting dramatically but believably. The whole plot to murder the recent newborns because one of them might be the returned Christ was sheer, bloody brilliance. I only wished they shown more of that, really gone for it. Mostly it’s a series of “Oh, no, the agents of Satan have arrived,” and then a quick cutaway. The religious stuff at the end is fine, if maybe a tad too operatic, but what can you expect dealing with a film series that operates on such a cosmic scale. I will say, though, that the (SPOILER) death of Damien is really anti-climactic. We reach the end of three movies of bloodletting and gore and demonic evil, and he just gets stabbed in the back? That’s it? Maybe something more grandiose like Jesus smiting him would have been a little better. But that’s alright, it doesn’t ruin the movie.

This one ends the story started in The Omen, and it ends it pretty well. Like I said, it’s apocalyptical enough and the ideas going on in the movie are bigger than the actual film itself, so that covers a lot of ground. The kills aren’t nearly as good as the first two films, but this one is dealing on a more abstract level of evil. And while it is not wholly satisfying, it will do just fine.

★★✮☆



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