The Omen (1976)

Today we have a horror film that I, upon first watch, didn’t particularly care for, however upon a second watch, that occurred not too long ago…I came to immediately love it. It is Richard Donner’s (yeah the Superman guy) 1976 masterpiece, The Omen!!

Now I’m sure we’ve all heard of Damian and how devilish he may be…but this film is so much more than just Damian’s antics. I’m going to class my second watch of The Omen as my first watch because as I remember, on my original first watch I wasn’t paying too much attention. Hopefully that made sense. Anyway, I haven’t watched a horror film that was this good for the first time for a damn long time. Hopefully that made sense too. What I’m trying to say is that The Omen, for what it is, is faultless. A perfect religious horror film and in my opinion, better than both The Exorcist and Rosemary’s Baby…although if you know me you’ll know I only love the latter of those two films.

image

A particular priest getting what was coming to him

I go on about the atmosphere that horror movies create probably too much but I have to say that this film has one of the most chilling, intense and sinister atmospheres out of any horror that I’ve seen. And that’s no exaggeration. I can’t describe enough to you the admiration I have for The Omen. Richard Donner truly created a masterpiece that deserves to be seen by all.

The performances are also a huge part of what make this film truly special…Gregory Peck gives an outstanding performance as Robert Thorn, a U.S. Ambassador in Britain who, 5 years after his child’s stillbirth (yeah that’s right…hang on) moves to England with his wife, Katherine, wonderfully played by Lee Remick and their adoptive son (see), Damian. Although Katherine doesn’t know that their child was stillborn and entirely believes Damian is her son as so she should. Anyway, Harvey Stephens is also perfectly creepy as Damian…an exceptional performance from a child actor. What struck me as strange about this film is that Damian himself isn’t they key element. The key element is the mystery of why such strange and gruesome deaths are happening…all of whom surround the Thorn’s in some way.

Speaking of the deaths in this film…they are incredibly memorable…I’m sure may of you are aware of the nanny hanging herself in front of Damian’s 5th birthday party celebrations immortally uttering the words ‘look at me Damian. It’s all for you.’ Damn creepy if you ask me.

image

Lee Remick as Katherine clutches Damian as she looks up at the terrifying suicide

Another notable cast member is David Warner as Jennings, the photographer who happens to take pictures of how the people who will be killed, will be killed. It’s as strange as it sounds. He is also the one to accompany Robert on his journey to find out if he is raising the antichrist himself.

Honestly I cannot think of a single scene that I do not enjoy with this one…it’s such a well made horror film with serious mystery elements…the mystery keeps you intrigued all the way through as you constantly want to find out more and more about the devil, the antichrist, 666, Jennings photographs…

As you can tell by now…I absolutely love The Omen and it is, in my opinion, the best satanic horror film of all time…easily. So compelling, so easily watchable and so intense and chilling…like I actually get chills.

image

Gregory Peck and David Warner trying to get to grips with the mysterious goings-on

The music also is another thing which is just perfect about the film…it deservedly won the Oscar for Best Original Score and think about this…it beat stuff like Rocky and Taxi Driver to that award…if that doesn’t signify an impressive score I don’t know what does.

The Omen is easily one of my favourite horror films of all time and is an absolute must watch for any movie lover…Richard Donner, I salute you sir.

Next up on our journey is another true masterpiece of the genre…the film that perfected the slasher genre…a trend which was nicely broken up by The Omen in the seventies. It also defined the final girl (more on that tomorrow) and came out in 1978. If you don’t know by now…it was directed by the legend, John Carpenter…you’ve got it now!!

Let me know your thoughts on this film in the comments and contact me at morgan@thepurpledon.com if you have any inquiries or suggestions for improvements to posts!

The Journey Continues Tomorrow

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *