Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
The Omen. Remake
Jose Lopez | Miami,Florida USA | 05/24/2010
(2 out of 5 stars)
"My personal bias perhaps clouds my judgement when it comes to this film, due in part because of my lack of respect for remakes,sequels,reboots or whatever you want to do. Sure sometimes they come out good,but I prefer the Original which I have seen than this remake(which I also Have seen)."
Nicely Done Remake of a Horror Classic Still Manages to Indu
E. Valero | Woodbridge, Ontario Canada | 12/07/2009
(3 out of 5 stars)
"An American Diplomat living in the UK, Robert Thorn (Liev Schreiber) and his wife Katherine, (Julia Stiles) have their lives turned upside down when strange occurrences begin to plague their lives and all seem to be connected to their son, Damien Thorn, who may be the antichrist as foretold in the book of Revelations. The evil forces that are protecting this spawn of Lucifer will do anything to protect his identity and death befalls anyone who dares to investigate this secret.
This better than expected remake of the 1976 horror film is technically well done with good performances from the ensemble cast and offers some unnerving imagery and tone. Since this is almost a by the numbers remake of the original, there is very little suspense. Those who have seen the original already know what is going to happen to these characters and to keep them interested, they updated the material (linking the return of the antichrist to today's current events) and inserted a couple of nifty dream sequences which are brief but effective and in one instance, incredibly hair-raising (Robert Thorn's brief dream in Italy- Gotta Love that smiling Priest). I also noticed there is an emphasis on the color red throughout- red flowers, red fruits, characters draped in red cloaks, red night gowns and in one genuinely scary scene, a person draped in red, runs across the screen in the distance just as one of the characters is about to meet their end. Some may find this in your face symbolism a bit too heavy handed but I found it effective.
Although the performances were good, I did find the cast a little too young to be truly believable in their roles. There was a maturity and a certain air of sophistication the 2 original leads conveyed that is missing here. However both lead actors still managed to turn in solid performances. I especially liked Julia Stiles. Her take on Kate Thorn differs from Lee Remick's. Stiles gives us a more distant Katherine. One who comes under suspicion of her offspring quite early on and never manages to let go. She seems extremely annoyed by him and once convinced of his malice, she is consumed by fear and paranoia. Despite of what some detractors say, I found her performance the most believable of the bunch and her character, although a lot more rougher around the edges than Lee Remick's portrayal, managed to induce real sympathy. She is after all a victim. Another stand out was Mia Farrow who plays Mrs. Baylock minus the accent. Billie Whitelaw who played the original was sinister enough and resembled a brutally demented Mary Poppins. Farrow's take on this character is still charming but her wickedness is less obvious. Although I do love her sinister smile as she feeds Damien his strawberries just before the vicious little demon gets on his scooter of doom and rides it towards his unsuspecting mother.
My only disappointment in the casting was with the choice of Seamus Davey-Fitzpatrick as Damien. Admittedly, he is a creepy kid but he fails to convey that innocence that Harvey Stephens, the original Damien had. What I loved about the original, was that Damien, at times, looked angelic and seemed unaware of the chaos that was taking place around him. It was as if he wasn't fully conscious of who he was yet the creepy characters around him made it clear to us that he was the devils offspring. Evil is at its most scary when it comes wrapped in childish innocence. Davey-Fitzpatrick is creepy from the get-go. Another major disappointment was with Marco Beltrami's score. It is good enough but when you are competing with Jerry Goldsmith's original, you better out-do yourself and in this case, the score fails to deliver the chilling magic of the original. The death sequences are pretty standard. They are carbon copies of the original (with the exception of Kate's grisly demise and the photographers decapitation is executed differently) so not much to report here.
Overall, the movie is good but when compared to Donner's original, it is inferior. You can say the same about the cast. They do their best but comparing them to Gregory Peck and Lee Remick is not exactly fair (although I did like Stiles) and despite some new elements added- the dream sequences, the hooded demon dog cameos etc and higher, glossier production values, "The Omen" (2006) will forever remain inferior, at least in my eyes, to the greater original visualization of hell on earth.
Arnita D. Brown | USA | 01/07/2010
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Robert Thorn is a senior American diplomat whose wife, Katherine, endures a difficult delivery where their newborn child has died. Thorn knows the news will devastate Katherine, who had suffered two previous miscarriages. The hospital priest presents Thorn with another child born that night, whose mother died in childbirth. The priest compels Thorn to take the infant boy as his own; Katherine will never know the truth, and their son, which they name Damien, will be raised as their flesh and blood. As the child turns five, unsettling events begin to occur. Whether you have seen the original or not, see this movie. It is a very good movie, a well-done remake that stays true to the original while adding some more scare to it. The idea of the anti-christ being born on this earth is very scary and this movie brings that possible reality to life once again."
One of the few horror movie remakes I like
Joker | Michigan | 08/23/2010
(5 out of 5 stars)
"We are living in the Age of Horror Movie Remakes. So, here's yet another classic horror movie that was remade. I'll be honest - this movie didn't need to be remade. The original 1976 movie is a classic in the horror movie genre (see my 5-star review). But, the fact is, it WAS remade an even 30 years after the original came out, whether you like it or not. When it comes to myself, I like it.
The original movie looks vintage 1970s - the cars, the hairstyles, the clothing, the lower technology, etc. The updated remake was released on June 6, 2006, or 06/06/06 - "666", the number of the beast. One noticeable difference with the remake compared to the original is that the remake is an all-around darker movie. The atmosphere and surroundings and overall feel are darker. I think this enhances the effectiveness of the scenes that are meant to be scary. An example is when Robert Thorn meets with Father Brennan under the bridge during the thunderstorm. I found this creepier than how it played out in the original. The thunderstorms during the scene where Thorn is cutting Damien's hair looking for the birthmark add a scariness to the scene. I also like the snowy scenes where Robert Thorn is talking to Bugenhagen and later goes to the cemetery in Cervet with the photographer Keith Jennings.
I found the initial meeting between Thorn and Father Brennan in the lobby was more effective than it was in Thorn's office in the original.
When Father Brennan gets struck by the steel rod that falls down from the top of the church, only a couple of seconds go by from the time he notices the rod until he is actually struck. This is an improvement. In the original movie, a full five seconds goes by from the time Father Brennan notices the rod until he is actually struck. This is ample time for him to scoot out of the way, but he just stands there and watches the rod fall down toward him and he accepts his fate without making an effort to get out of the way.
Another thing I noticed is that the remake took certain scenes and turbo-charged them. An example is the scene at the end of the movie when Robert Thorn is driving with Damien to the church. He's driving recklessly, plowing through gates, skidding and spinning around, smashing into things, all while Damien was putting up more of a fight in the car than in the original. This is more entertaining than in the original, not that this scene in the original wasn't entertaining. It was.
I think the acting in this remake was a little better than in the original. The acting in the original came across as "wooden" and campy at times. In this remake, there isn't a hint of campiness.
One thing that was added to the remake were the brief appearances of demons dressed in red. That was cool.
Now I want to compare the major characters from the two movies and give my opinion on who was the best...
Harvey Stephens (1976) or Seamus Davey-Fitzpatrick (2006)?
WINNER: It's a tie
Stephens was evil and innocent at the same time, whereas Davey-Fitzpatrick was evil most of the time. I think the 2006 Damien's facial expressions were more evil than the 1976 Damien's. The 1976 Damien really didn't have to try hard to be evil looking. He just was, but in a more subtle way than the 2006 Damien.
Billie Whitelaw (1976) or Mia Farrow (2006)?
WINNER: Billie Whitelaw
Billie Whitelaw just, I mean JUST edges out Mia Farrow. It's extremely close. Billie Whitelaw had the role of Mrs. Baylock down, plain and simple. She was evil and very convincing. Mia Farrow did an outstanding job as well. Her facial expressions were plain evil. Again, it's very close.
Patrick Troughton (1976) or Pete Postlethwaite (2006)?
WINNER: Pete Postlethwaite
His acting was a little better. He seemed more suited for the role than Patrick Troughton. He seemed to put more heart and emotion into his words.
Gregory Peck (1976) or Liev Schreiber (2006)?
WINNER: Liev Schreiber
Liev Schreiber's acting was better and more convincing and believable than Gregory Peck's. Gregory Peck's acting came across as "wooden" and campy a number of times. He seemed inconsistent throughout the movie, whereas Liev Schreiber was very consistent.
Lee Remick (1976) or Julia Stiles (2006)?
WINNER: Julia Stiles
Lee Remick gave a decent performance, but her acting wasn't believable or convincing in certain scenes compared to Stiles. Stiles seemed to put more heart and soul into her performance.
David Warner (1976) or David Thewlis (2006)?
WINNER: It's a tie
Both actors gave good performances, so it's a tie.
Leo McKern (1976) or Michael Gambon (2006)?
WINNER: Michael Gambon
His portrayal of the character was slightly better. I realize makeup and camera angles might have something to do with it, but he's the winner.
Dog at the birthday party:
The Rottweiler (1976) or the German Shepherd (2006)?
WINNER: German Shepherd
The German Shepherd looked more fierce and evil than the Rottweiler, plain and simple.
What about the musical score?
Jerry Goldsmith (1976) or Marco Beltrami (2006)?
Goldsmith's score is legendary, one of the great horror movie scores ever. However, Beltrami's score is also very good and did an adequate job in the remake.
So there you go. I'm a fan of the remake of The Omen. As I said, it's one of the few horror movie remakes I like. How do I compare it to the original? It's just as good, so I give this remake the same 5-star rating I gave the original."