Blessed (2004)
By: Michael Helms on March 9, 2005  |  Comments  |  Bookmark and Share
DVD
MRA (Australia). Region 4, PAL. 1.85:1 (16:9 enhanced). English DD 5.1, English DD 2.0. 84 minutes
The Movie
Credits
Director: Simon Fellows
Starring:Heather Graham, James Purefoy, David Hemmings, Stella Stevens, Andy Serkis, William Hootkins
Screenplay:Jason Rothwell
Music: Barry Taylor
Tagline: Fear The
Unborn
Country: UK/Romania
Not too long ago a reviewer on this site wished for a decent cloning flick while lamenting the existence of Godsend. Blessed mightn't be that movie but it's a whole let less Godawful than Godsend.

After a dynamic opening involving a very pregnant woman leaping from the top of a very tall city building Heather Graham wakes from the nightmare to appear as Samantha, partner of Craig (James Purefoy), anxious potential parents who are making all the right moves with little success. Craig has just been sacked but as a writer has had his first novel picked up by an agent. Simultaneously the couple are recommended to a fertility clinic in the country. Sam has her eggs removed and is impregnanted in the high-tech clinic which also requires them to relocate to the strange new community. A pregnant woman is seen arguing when a man in a hood approaches and pulls an automatic weapon on her. The people next door go missing. Sam's Doctor calls to let her know she's pregnant. He also relates the news to a gruff voice the owner of which turns out to be David Hemmings (in his last role) as Earl Sydney, publishing magnate and all round mysterious figure who Craig meets at a party. Sam's next check up reveals she's having twins. Craig and his agent meet with Earl who offers an incredible deal. Craig and Sam move into a house by the lake. The agent does some research into Earl that connects him to the cloning industry. A personal visit involves her being poisoned by Earl's tea. At a check up a very pregnant Sam is scratched from the inside. Andy Serkis as an obsessed Italian priest turns up and keeps bumping into Sam. Sam learns about the cloning clinic and attempts to warn Craig who doesn't want to know. Serkis turns up at Sam's one night raving about an ancient prophecy. Sam has to glass him but he sets fire to the house and then drives a car into the clinic before setting it on fire. Sam saves herself by jumping in a bath and is soon on the way to hospital having her babies in the back of an ambulance with excellent childbirth sound effects. Four years later at a children's party a young boy dressed as the devil is seen to be playing up when he suddenly keels over as his face decays. Sams two girls look on knowingly confirming the ranting of Andy Serkis that Sam has been impreganted by the Devil.
Video
Very sharp transfer of a film that's slick to the point of being glossy throughout even during the darkest night sequences.
Audio
A choice of stereo or a 5.1 surround mix demonstrate the excellent use of sound effects as noted above and during scenes of destruction.
Extra Features
Talent profiles (ie. selective credit listings) for Heather Graham and James Purefoy but they miss the chance to document the illustrious career of David Hemmings despite dedicating the film to him.
The Verdict
High end TV standard production from producer Andrew Stevens (who manages to fit his ex-Playboy centrefold mum Stella into the cast) that's as slick as any of the erotic thrillers he's made a living from in the past decade and a half. Unfortunately they down play the horror elements. Filmed in Romania, at times the film strives to create an atmosphere of unease then blows it like the slick that can't even get the name of the main male lead right. Still interesting and enjoyable, just not any sort of urgent viewing.
Movie Score
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