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REVIEW: "The Omen"

Evil was never this amusing

By Wayne Francis
Jacksonville, Florida


John Moore


Dan McDermott


Liev Schreiber, Julia Stiles, Josh Hutcherson, Mia Farrow, Seamus Davey- Fitzpatrick, David Thewlis, Pete Postlehwaite


One hour, 50 minutes


20th Century Fox


The Omen Trailer

My thesaurus tells me omen also means warning. How appropriate for such an awful movie. Consider yourself omened. This movie blows.


What a silly little horrid film.

The Omen aspires to be a thriller, but it produces more comedy than serious drama. One main reason: the child actor playing Damien is so poorly coached and directed that he becomes a running joke; most close ups of him require that his eyes squint which results in more unintentional laughter than fearful concern.

When one views a movie called “The Omen” (based on the 1976 original) that purports to revolve around the birth of the son of Satan, we don’t need much prodding to understand there’s something a little off about the boy who is born from a jackal and uses strange powers to force women to hang themselves from rooftops.

As you might expect, The Omen begins with the birth of Damien. His parents are missing at the hospital the same night that two other parents (Live Schreiber, Julia Stiles) birth their first child. Their child dies, and so Dad adopts Damien as their own—the mother is oblivious—and a few years later, the boy becomes evil. Dogs bark at him, and one day he bumps Mom over the side of a ledge. She falls and nearly dies, and while hospitalized, she asks Daddy to kill the boy. Dad resists the urge until it’s too late, and by the film’s end, it’s a challenge to even care.

The scenes in between all the suspense—like when Mom and Dad first visit the house to which they’re moving—feel like the first day of a play rehearsal when a director blocks the stage, and actors stand still in one place, recite their lines, and then move to another place.

Schreiber and Stiles work hard to draw attention away from the abysmal scene choreography, but no luck. In the end, what we’re left with is a dull, uninspired film without any reason to be made other than the fact that June 6, 2006 occurs only once, and a release date of 6-6-6 is great marketing gimmick. This gimmick, however, is misleading, because the actual 6-6-6 date occurred six years after the birth of Christ, at a time when stories about the underworld could inspire fear instead of sighs, dread instead of giggles.

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