Four out of five stars. The woman is pregnant and, as it begins to rain, the wife offers her shelter in their home. The story opens with a husband and wife, Kate and Alan Marlow, walking in the countryside with their four children. While you might think that the decision to shoot inside real houses and other buildings might give the setting a more authentic feel, instead you feel extremely claustrophobic with the actors and props all squeezed tightly together as a result, not to mention the movie's generally poor lighting and badly-recorded audio gets aggravated further as a result. . Alan only starts suspecting something may be up when the string of tragedy turns more personal - that is, when he sees evidence that Bonnie made him sterile! But as I already mentioned, the movie stubbornly refuses to show this.
Alternatively, there was a novel released before the film came out. Bonnie starts to break things and Sam gets blamed for them, despite him saying he didn't do it. That's what this movie was about. Alan Marlowe and his wife Kate seem to be living the perfect life, with four children — the newest only recently born — and a large house in the countryside. A problem easily solved, right? Though the cousins were often notorious penny-pinchers, I still cannot help but think Beaumont blew most of the budget on those pretty opening helicopter shots as well as later helicopter footage of London because the remainder of the movie comes across as particularly shabby, even when compared to other drive-in and grindhouse movies of the time. One by one, the couple's natural offspring are killed off in horrible ways; any future attempts at conception end in miscarriage and Stoddard's eventual sterility.
The drive-ins and the grindhouses were still alive and raking in cash at that time, so in 1980 they released, chiefly to those two particular markets, their first personally-produced Hollywood movies. But even when you look elsewhere in the movie, there is very little that not only makes Bonnie horrific, but a character. Worse, the vague supernatural explanation is not adequately clarified by the film's denouement, leaving little more than a somber tale of meaningless tragedy. This is, by far and away, one of the most disturbing sets of images from the movie and something that will stay with viewers long afterwards. Most of the problems can be traced directly back to director Gabrielle Beaumont. With even more cash in hand, they started to dabble in the more lucrative business of co-productions with outside countries. When she does appear, she has little to no dialogue, actually speaking for the very first time around the half hour mark.
The cast of The Godsend - 1980 includes: Patrick Barr as Dr. Taverner pulls him off of her. Come on, isn't it obvious she is guilty? When Alan finally confronts the truth the movie becomes even more grim and the psychology of a woman clinging to her remaining children biological and adopted works against him and he takes his daughter Lucy and flees. The two girls cast to play Bonnie only one of which has an additional acting credit apart from this movie at different points of time are cute enough, and are able to give a good glower when the camera gets close to their face at key moments, but I can't really judge their performances because of those previously mentioned limiting circumstances. Shortly after being given custody of Bonnie, their original infant dies, for reasons never revealed, in the crib it was sharing with Bonnie cheap bastards! The only member of the cast who managed to catch my attention was Angela Pleasence. A nightmare from which there is no escape, allowing the dread to continue to build upwards without giving the respite of the ordinary.
Just because both happen to be about an evil child doesn't mean a thing. It does have a suitably eerie mood, beginning with the effectively enigmatic performance by Ms. Of course, the profits from these productions enabled them to make more right into the '70s. Despite Alan's reservations, Kate wants to keep the baby, whom they name Bonnie. They keep her baby as one of their own, but their own children start dying under mysterious circumstances, starting with their infant.
Bonnie becomes ill with the , and purposely kisses Alan as he takes a nap. The Godsend is as shamefully underrated as anything I've seen from over there. Later, they find out that Kate has had an accident and is in the hospital. Some of these films include the Richard Roundtree caper flick Diamonds, and the Jack Palance gangster comedy-drama The Four Deuces. If you don't expect an action-packed, thrill-ride, or any type of a masterpiece, and are in the mood for some low-key, retro Horror, that doesn't require your absolute, undivided attention, you just might not hate The Godsend. He becomes ill with the mumps too, and has a flashback in a dream, to the circumstances of the deaths of his sons, and Bonnie being nearby in each one.
Alan says Bonnie loves Lucy the same way she loved their three boys, and Kate is disgusted at the insinuation. Also, it was given some money for its budget, evident from the first few minutes of English scenery shot from helicopters that plays under the opening credits. This movie is not connected to, a rip off of or inspired by The Omen. When they check in on the babies later their own has mysteriously died. The Godsend is interesting enough to keep you involved for its 80-minute duration but in no way does it come close to matching the drama and tension of other films of its ilk, such as its most obvious inspiration The Omen.
Alan comes to believe that the new kid, Bonnie played at different ages by Wilhelmina Green and Joanne Boorman , is responsible, but Kate just can't accept that this adorable moppet could possibly be a danger. The baby cuckoo imitates the calls of its nestmates so the unwilling adoptive parents are none the wiser. For one thing, it was an adaptation of a respected novel written by Bernard Taylor, whose later novel Mother's Boys was also turned into a movie. Cyd Hayman, who plays Kate, is similarly unconvincing. The visual look is soft and blurry, even when it isn't one of those times the lens is smeared with Vaseline. Alan tries to discuss his concerns about Bonnie with Kate, saying she is not normal.
I saw this film when it first came out in 1980. I also read the book and found that the movie was a very faithful adaptation. Alan rushes back to London, where he learns that Kate had been pregnant, but due to the accident. Certainly, this film does not create the sub-genre, but it was fairly fresh for the time and its evocative imagery is haunting and disturbing. Each of my reviews come with screenshots and a trailer or film clip so you can hopefully judge for yourself if the film's worth tracking down. We see the clues that the family overlooks and we can feel and empathize with the growing unease of the Marlow children as they begin to fear Bonnie of the bonnie blue eyes. One other horrific moment, where none of the characters dies, not only happens off-screen but is revealed over a day after the fact, maybe because what happened is a total rip-off of something that happened in The Omen.