Story: Allison (Kacey Clarke) experienced a difficult pregnancy, one that included some accidents and even unusual events at times, but she persisted and now has a son, Neron. If the pregnancy was hard on Allison, things don’t let up once her son is born, as odd scenarios continue to unfold. She begins to have minor hallucinations that seem to escalate, incredibly vivid dreams that seem like a twisted reality, and some dark visions, sometimes horrific flashes that keep Allison on edge. But what starts off as eerie feelings and bad dreams soon takes a darker turn, as people around the new family start to turn up dead. Allison and her husband Kevin (Yves Bright) try to navigate the mysterious events around them, while a priest (Eric Roberts) is convinced an ancient evil is involved. Is there a curse of some kind on Allison and her family, or is it just a series of tragic coincidences?
Entertainment Value: Child of Satan wants to be an updated take on a Rosemary’s Baby style narrative, but falls short of even being a passable homage to that horror classic. The story here is convoluted and inconsistent, right from the opening scenes to an odd time jump, then spiraling through the main plot, which is not the most interesting or effective even at its best. The poorly crafted story is a mystery to me, as there are no wild twists or innovative elements in this one. So despite being formulaic, Child of Satan manages to bungle even the well established tropes in the genre, no small feat. The pace is rather slow at times as well, further hampered by a dull plot and that keeps the entertainment value low here. I can almost always find some elements in a movie worthwhile, but I was at a loss with Child of Satan, which was a chore to sit through. Even fans of killer kid movies or supernatural chillers will likely be left cold in this case, as the movie fails to nail even the most time tested genre conventions. In the end, I can’t offer even the most minor of recommendations for Child of Satan.
This won’t be news to most b movie veterans, but despite prominent placement on the artwork and top billing, Eric Roberts is not the lead here. In truth, Roberts has a small role that pops up now and then to further the narrative, but that’s about the extent. His scenes are separate from the main cast, so those sequences come off as detached and not seamless with the rest of the movie. Roberts turns in a mildly entertaining performance as an over the top priest, but he doesn’t have enough screen time to carry the picture. Not that he could, as it would have taken an army of b movie talent to save Child of Satan. But for fans of Roberts who are fine with his role being a glorified cameo, he is the lone reason to visit this picture. Kacey Clarke is passable in the actual lead, but she simply isn’t given much of a chance to shine with this material. I give Clarke credit for doing as well as she does here, as she draws some life from the script, but can only stretch that so far. The cast also includes Yves Bright, Caite Upton, and James Martin Kelly.