The Devil's Daughter (1973)
She's Just a Devil Woman
Little children are so trusting, aren't they? - Lilith
Having turned 21 Diane Shaw (Belinda Montgomery) finds her life being turned upside down when her mother dies. It is at the funeral that Diane meets Lilith Malone (Shelley Winters), an old friend of her mother's and a bit of an eccentric who insists that Diane moves in with her rather than stay at a hotel. It is there that Diane gets an unsettling feeling as Lilith seems very possessive and has an album of her baby photos and so she moves out and in with a friend. But it is there that Diane learns that she is supposedly the daughter of the devil and now must marry a demon of his choosing.
The more I watch horror movies from the 70s especially early 70s the more I believe you needed to seem them back then to appreciate them unlike other genres which tend to be timeless. It is why watching "The Devil's Daughter" now for the first time over 40 years after it was released I find myself not impressed by it neither disappointed but kind of bored by it all. The trouble is that in the wake of "Rosemary's Baby" there was a whole collection of movies released which used similar child of Satan storylines and that made them all imitations which never quite had the same impact of "Rosemary's Baby".
As such for the most "The Devil's Daughter" ends up just another typical spawn of Satan storyline with a young woman whose life is turned upside down by a death of a loved one then revelations over her past whilst dealing with on obsessive person trying to control their life. But there is the ending which I won't go in to detail but say there are twists and revelations which make it a little bit more entertaining.
In truth the majority of the entertainment in "The Devil's Daughter" comes from Shelley Winters who judges her performance nicely to make Lilith just the right amount of over the top eccentric during the first half. But unfortunately despite a few familiar names the majority of the other performances are forgettable, except those which benefit from a twist ending.
What this all boils down to is that "The Devil's Daughter" is one of those movies which I am sure still holds some sort of nostalgic charm for those who watched it back as teenagers in the early 70s but offers little other than familiarity for those who stumble across it now.
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