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Demon Seed vs. Deadly Friend

People have always feared change. Different people experience this to different degrees. The unknown always supplies contrasting emotions: fear and excitement. When vast cultural changes come about, artists will explore these themes in their work. This is what led to the wave of anti-technological films that crested in the late 70s and early 80s.

Demon Seed is a story about a computer that gains sentience and thereafter wants to gain telepresence as well. It's quite a well done film; the antagonistic computer in this film acts with a cold logic that seems inhuman when you watch the film, but on later reflection becomes all too familiar.

Deadly Friend is a film that was released much later. Computers still weren't common-place, and very few people had much idea what they were capable of. The film came out after the wave of anti-technological films had begun to recede.

In this film, the protagonist is a nerdy anti-hero who is trying to become romantically involved with the attractive blond girl next door. He is also a genius roboticist. When the love interest is shot by an overly armed neighbour, the nerd implants chips from his home made robot to save her life. The result of this medical experiment is that she loses her own personality and becomes a homicidal maniac.

In spite of how stupid and pointless Deadly Friend is, it's still almost worth seeing for the infamous basketball scene.

What these two films illustrate is that the fear of the unknown sparked the creation of a sub-genre of film that has now essentially died out. As the general public became more aware of what technology is and isn't capable of, it became more difficult to make a movie about how scary computers are. It is a bit of a shame that movies critical of technology aren't really being produced anymore, considering that many members of the new generation of movie goers can't stop texting for long enough to sit down and watch a movie.


Fitz said…
I can't believe that basketball scene exists on film. Thats almost as bad as the Punisher scene where well...just watch
Ben said…
That's almost as terrible and hilarious. LOL

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