The Final Conflict aka Omen III: The Final Conflict – UK | USA, 1981 – reviews

‘The power of evil is no longer in the hands of a child’

The Final Conflict aka Omen III: The Final Conflict is a 1981 British-American supernatural horror feature film directed by Graham Baker (Alien Nation; Impulse) from a screenplay written by Andrew Birkin (The Name of the Rose; The Pied Piper), based on characters created by author David Seltzer.

The Twentieth Century Fox production stars Sam Neill, Rossano Brazzi, Don Gordon, Lisa Harrow and Barnaby Holm.

As with the first two installments, the notable soundtrack score was composed by Jerry Goldsmith.

Plot:

Antichrist Damien Thorn (Sam Neill) is now a successful thirty-two year-old industrialist ready to fulfill his destiny. As Damien is appointed American ambassador to the UK, priests led by Father DeCarlo (Rossano Brazzi) try to kill him.

While Damien prepares for the return of Jesus Christ (the Nazarene), he takes advantage of his relationship with Kate Reynolds (Lisa Harrow) to recruit her son, Peter (Barnaby Holm), as his follower…

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Reviews [click links to read more]:

“Like Damien, the film does not paint a very persuasive picture of how the forces of Satan might practically set about subverting the world order, and this shortcoming is compounded by the script’s gestures towards a serious consideration of the theological issues involved – something the melodramatic terms of reference can hardly accommodate.” Phil Hardy (editor), The Aurum Film Encyclopedia: Horror

“Neill does a good job with this, but he doesn’t have much help from the rest of the cast who really don’t stand out. The Omen films were always known for their crazy deaths and the Omen III really doesn’t have that going for it.” JP Roscoe, Basement Rejects

” …it’s uninspired and painfully bland, despite the best efforts of a melodramatic soundtrack and the presence of several biblical quotes. The mystery and the sense of drama of the original is long gone, the death scenes (the highlights of the original movie) are fairly mundane.” Dave Sindelar, Fantastic Movie Musings and Ramblings

The Final Conflict has a few memorable scenes for sure–I mean, one of Damien’s schemes involves wiping out any baby that could possibly be the second coming of Christ–but these scenes are too few and too far between the copious minutes spent with either Good or Evil as they fret. Surprisingly, the obvious political allegory is left to wither on the vine.” Final Girl

” …the representatives of good seem a bunch of complete no-hopers […] The script gives Sam Neill some magnificent soliloquies on the power and purity of evil, which come across with a disturbing sympathy.” Richard Scheib, Moria

“Beyond Neill’s performance the only other thing worth mentioning is that once in a while a stunt manages to grab your eyes such as when a man caught up in cabling falls from some gantry and swings in to a plastic sheet which is on fire […] sadly most of the time it comes up visually short of being attention grabbing or impressive.” Andy Webb, The Movie Waffler

” …it just seems to have trouble maintaining an intensity and interest throughout the entire narrative. It has an excellent (and even unnerving) setup that should have been absolutely epic. Unfortunately, the film falls short because it ends up feeling too intimate.” Brett Gallman, Oh, the Horror!

” …the sum total of the movie’s dysfunctional parts results in a dull, silly and often unpleasant movie that’s unworthy of its predecessors.” Julien Houle, Pop Culture Thoughts

” …a growing disappointment, as we realize that the apocalyptic confrontation between the forces of good and evil is being reduced to a bunch of guys with Italian accents running around trying to stab Damien in the back.” Roger Ebert

“Rather than the gripping climax to the Omen series it should be, The Final Conflict is a bit of a damp squib. It’s not a terrible film by any means but it’s so devoid of anything truly gripping or memorable that it’s ultimately a bit of an underwhelming end to an otherwise great trilogy.” Chris Scullion, That Was a Bit Mental

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Cast and characters:

  • Sam Neill … Damien Thorn
  • Rossano Brazzi … DeCarlo
  • Don Gordon … Harvey Dean
  • Lisa Harrow … Kate Reynolds
  • Barnaby Holm … Peter Reynolds
  • Mason Adams … President
  • Robert Arden … American Ambassador
  • Leueen Willoughby … Barbara Dean
  • Marc Boyle … Brother Benito
  • Milos Kirek … Brother Martin
  • Tommy Duggan … Brother Mattius
  • Louis Mahoney … Brother Paulo
  • Richard Oldfield … Brother Simeon
  • Tony Vogel … Brother Antonio
  • Arwen Holm … Carol
  • Hugh Moxey … Manservant
  • William Fox … Diplomat
  • John Baskcomb … Diplomat
  • Norman Bird … Dr. Philmore
  • Marc Smith … Press Officer
  • Arnold Diamond … Astronomer
  • Eric Richard … Astronomer’s Technician
  • Richard Williams … Vicar
  • Stephen Turner … Stigwell
  • Al Matthews … Workman
  • Larry Martyn … Orator
  • Frank Coda … Orator
  • Harry Littlewood … Orator
  • Harvey Bernhard … US Embassy employee (uncredited)
  • Jeremy Bulloch … News reporter (uncredited)
  • Adrienne Burgess … Woman (uncredited)
  • Hazel Court … Champagne Woman At Hunt (uncredited)
  • Glen Cunningham … Peter (uncredited)
  • Walter Henry … Auction Attendee (uncredited)
  • Barrie Holland … Reporter (uncredited)
  • Guy Standeven … Auction Attendee (uncredited)
  • Ruby Wax … US Ambassador’s secretary (uncredited)

Technical details:

108 minutes
Dolby
Aspect Ratio: 2.35: 1

The film was released in theatres on March 20, 1981.

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