"The Godsend" is a title that hints at a positive turn in supernatural moviemaking. The stony look in little Bonnie's eye -- and the urgent music that attends every close-up of her -- leaves little doubt that she is an otherworldly child. But could the other world be heaven rather than hell?
No, it couldn't. Blond-haired Bonnie, abandoned at birth by her mother -- a strange gypsy lady with a sickly smile -- is soon so insistent on the undivided attention of her good-hearted step-parents that she climbs into bed with them whenever they try to make love and starts murdering their natural children at fever pace. By her fourth birthday, this precious looking little girl has three murders under her belt and is angling for another.
Stepdad can read between the lines, and decides to dispose of Bonnie, one way or another, in the interests of saving Lucy, his last remaining natural child. But Stepmom refuses to accept the ghastly truth.
As her husband astutely observes, "You're blinded by your maternal feelings and nobody can blame you for that."
"The Godsend" which wandered into several area theaters over the weekend, is a British import that boasts some pretty countryside locations as well as the pretty faces and ernest acting of Cyd Hayman and Malcolm Stoddard (star of the recently aired "Darwin" series), as Bonnie's unlucky foster mother and father. It may also set a new record for the number of sex scenes in a child-possession movie.
But if memories of "Village of the Damned" and its spinoffs lead anyone to expect a classier slant on the satanic from across the ocean, such expectations will be dashed in short order. Most of the film fare Britain sends us is their top-drawer product. "The Godsend" is a reminder that they have a bottom drawer, too.