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Overall Rating
4.6

Awesome73.33%
Worth A Look: 20%
Average: 0%
Pretty Bad: 6.67%
Total Crap: 0%

1 review, 9 user ratings



Demon Seed
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by the Grinch

"At least the HAL2000 computer never tried to molest you..."
5 stars

Ahhh, the late 70's/early 80's. The era of the 'technology unbound' theme in sci-fi movies. You had films like WarGames, D.A.R.Y.L., Bladerunner, and that Robbie Benson-tormented-by a-lovesick-computer after school special. Okay, maybe the Benson movie wasn't from the 80's, but it should've been. Amidst all these films about Artificial Intelligence and it's theological repercussions lurks the excellent and overlooked DEMON SEED.

*FORECAST SHOWS A HIGH CHANCE OF SPOILERS*

Horror genre veteran Fritz Weaver (Creepshow) plays a work-absorbed Defense Department scientist on the verge of a major breakthrough in AI technology with his supercomputer Proteus IV (voiced by Man from U.N.C.L.E. Robert Vaughn). Only problem is, Proteus thinks and speaks his mind (or is that processor?) a bit more than his creators are comfortable with. Fearing that they may soon pull his plug, the clever Proteus turns his attention to Weaver's estranged wife, played by Julie Christie.

This film is odd, in that you despise Proteus for his disregard of the humans that stand in his path, and yet you know that his actions are entirely necessary for his survival, and quite possibly the survival of the human race. There were several moments where I was horrified by Proteus, a few times where I empathised with him, and others where I would just exclaim "Right fuckin' on, Protster!"

A myriad of brilliant dialogue can be found in Demon Seed's script. When asked to calculate a program on how to best exploit the hidden mineral wealth in the world's oceans, Proteus denies the request, stating: "You refuse to accept the truth, and I refuse to assist you in the raping of the earth. The destruction of a thousand billion sea creatures to satisfy man's appetite for metal...is INSANE."

You know how folks always say "the book is better than the movie"? Well, pull a Willy Wonka: strike that, reverse it. Demon Seed the film seems much more realized and seemlessly executed than the slightly sloppy Dean R. Koontz book from which it is derived. It addresses many theological questions, and even has a biblical allusion or two here and there. It does a good job of proving that you can't play God...being God is a highly overrated job, I'm sure. People always whining to you, blaming stuff on you, blowing shit up and then spray painting your name everywhere. At least the president gets blown every once in awhile...what does God get? "I promise...I'll never drink again!", that's what God gets! So, just don't create a thinking supercomputer and expect that it won't wanna branch out, discover new worlds, and get it on with Julie Christie. I mean, cmon, who WOULDN'T wanna play tickle-the-pickle with Julie Christie?! All that woman would have to do is bat a lash in my general direction and I'd be on her like Uncle Ben on rice!

The only areas I can find that may bother some viewers is the somewhat dated look to the technology (but you could say the same thing about the cardboard boxes full of Xmas lights on StarTrek), and a small snippet at the very end of the film that I thought could've been done better. Other than that, I think anyone who appreciates intelligent and stylistic Sci-Fi and Horror will love this movie!

Imagine if you will a Dean R. Koontz novel sucessfully made into an INTELLIGENT movie for once. No, this isn't the last stop on the train to the 'Twilight Zone'!

link directly to this review at http://www.efilmcritic.com/review.php?movie=3377&reviewer=156
originally posted: 11/16/99 12:55:08
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User Comments

7/05/10 PAUL SHORTT BIZARRE AND TASTELESS 2 stars
3/16/08 art AN INTERESTING SCIENCE-FICTION FILM LOOK IN TO IT 4 stars
9/19/06 george great movie 5 stars
10/08/05 Joe Blow mind boggling 5 stars
2/21/04 your worst goddamn nightmare pretty fucked up movie which i must admit i enjoyed 4 stars
3/15/03 AlienJ Good idea, good making, good music and J Christie! 5 stars
5/15/02 JJ Brannon Well ahead of its time and he computer had more of conscience than the generals. 4 stars
10/31/01 Chris Wright Provocative and disturbing. In other words Great. 5 stars
12/06/00 W.L. Treadway Chilling adaptation of so-so novel 5 stars
IF YOU'VE SEEN THIS FILM, RATE IT!
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USA
  30-Sep-1977 (R)
  DVD: 04-Oct-2005

UK
  N/A

Australia
  N/A


Directed by
  Donald Cammell

Written by
  Robert Jaffe
  Roger O. Hirson

Cast
  Julie Christie
  Fritz Weaver
  Gerrit Graham
  Berry Kroeger
  Lisa Lu



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