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Demon Seed

Entry updated 14 January 2017. Tagged: Film.

Film (1977). MGM. Directed by Donald Cammell. Written by Robert Jaffe, Roger O Hirson, based on Demon Seed (1973) by Dean R Koontz. Cast includes Julie Christie, Gerrit Graham, Berry Kroeger and Fritz Weaver. 95 minutes. Colour.

When the supercomputer Proteus IV is switched on it refuses to obey instructions, in the time-honoured tradition (for examples of which, see Colossus, the Forbin Project; 2001: A Space Odyssey). All its terminals are shut down with the inadvertent exception of one, located in its creator's own automated home, which also contains a primitive one-armed Robot and the scientist's estranged wife. The Computer takes control of the house, trapping the woman inside and subjecting her to a terrifying (and calculatedly fetishistic) ordeal culminating in its raping her in order to create a new super-race melding human and Machine. This up-to-date Luddite variation of the Frankenstein theme, more Horror than sf, can perhaps be admired for its bravado in putting its tasteless subtext up there on the surface where everyone can see it. There is indeed a baby. [JB/PN]

see also: Paranoia.


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