Damien’s Seed (1996)

Rating:

USA. 1996.

Crew

Director/Screenplay – Edward Holzman, Story – Edward Holzman & Meriam Castel, Producer – Bradford Hill, Photography – Bruce Dorfman, Music – K. Alexander Wilkinson, Special Effects – West EFX Inc (Supervisor – Erick Brennan), Production Design – John Larena. Production Company – Mystique Films

Cast

Matthew Sullivan (Barry Haven), Jacqueline Lovell (Trix), Leslie Harter (Jane Jansen), Jimmy Wlcek (Eric), Shauna O’Brien (Connie), Leslie Olivan (Diane), Kira Reed (Detective Carol Reiner), Scott Shaughnessy (Frank)


Plot

Private investigator Barry Haven is hired by Jane Jansen to find her missing sister Jessica. Joined by Trix, a free-spirited hitchhiker he picks up and then takes on as his assistant, Haven tries to track Jessica down in the small town of Lost Lake, where she was last known to be. Both he and Trix have sex with various people they meet during the course of the investigation. However, it becomes increasingly apparent that Jessica has been taken by a cult known as The Daughters of Darkness, who are holding her to be sacrificed as they await the return of Damien, the son of the cult’s leader.


Damien’s Seed is a made-for-cable erotic film. Made-for-cable deals in softcore erotica – no penetration, no male genitalia, only brief pubic shots – and are made with professional crews and reasonably competent actors, plus the semblance of a script. Some of these are even quite good – see Embrace the Darkness (1998).

Damien’s Seed audaciously tries to conduct an erotic film as a ripoff of The Omen (1976). (It is interesting to note how since The Omen, the name Damien has become de rigeur associated with The Devil and/or Satanism). The film doesn’t succeed at doing this particularly well – the plot only develops in intermittent stretches between the erotic couplings. The ending conducts an okay twist variation on Spellbinder (1988), although it is a familiar twist and one that the film does not push for as much drama as it could have done. There is, for example, little in the way of sinisterness attached to the activities of the cult as there might be in a standard Omen copy.

That leaves the film to be measured on the basis of its erotica. Most of this falls into a bland forgettability and lacks any distinction. The sole exception is Jacqueline Lovell, who has a gorgeous freeness and natural sexuality. There is a nice scene, which radiates a good deal of steaminess, with her doing a striptease in the headlights of a pickup and then making out on the back of the truck.

Damien’s Seed was shot on location in the California resort town on Big Bear Lake and has been made on the cheap with locations restricted to motels and chalets. Co-star Leslie Harter later married director Robert Zemeckis of Back to the Future (1985) and Who Framed Roger Rabbit? (1988) fame.


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