Hard-drinking retired cop Lou Cherney is brought back into the game when he is hired privately to find a girl who had gone missing but was never found while Lou was still on the force. A seemingly simple case becomes more complicated by the day as Lou's friends start getting killed off and the woman who is the prime suspect appears to have supernatural powers.
What is a director suppose to do after spending a career making iconic sic-fi monster b-movies? End it by making a dull, repetitive and all around terrible movie about a retired cop chasing Satan around New York City, of course. Bert I. Gordon, the man behind such films as "The Amazing Colossal Man", "Earth vs. the Spider", "The Food of the Gods" and "Empire of the Ants" made his last monster movie in '77. I'm not sure why he decided his last hurrah was going to be in 1990 with what feels like a movie that's been done to death.
Former detective Lou Cherney is privately hired to find the missing daughter of a wealthy business man. Of course this is no ordinary case as Lou finds himself getting tangled in a web of missing girls, black magic and a woman who could possibly be Satan himself. Herself? Whatever. Naturally, a majority of the movie is spent with Lou dealing with his personal demons due to the case bringing out the worst in him. Especially when his friends are being killed around him and he finds out that he himself is the actual target of Satan, and all the answers seem to lie with a centuries old painting.
That's about what I could piece together out of the movie at least. A great deal of the movie is spent with a depressed Lou Cherney (Robert Forster) being depressed and we are reminded, sporadically, that he's also working on a case. I certainly can't name any specific movies off the top of my head but "Satan's Princess" felt similar to a lot of movies in terms of tone, pacing and story. The down-on-his-luck retired cop (occasionally because of injury) who gets brought back from obscurity by being privately hired. They find out the simple case is actually much bigger than he expected - usually a politician or a corporation is involved. "Satan's Princess" changes it up by throwing Satan into the mix, and I should say that as a question since it's never made quite clear what the antagonist, Nicole St. James, is. Going by the fact that the title is "Satan's Princess" I'm going to be an ass and assume.
I'm not an expert on Bert I. Godon's filmography; actually I can honestly say that I have not seen a single one of his movies - sorry folks, sci-fi monster movies aren't my thing. But his previous movies have to be better than "Satan's Princess" because the movie is a goddamn mess. Beyond being completely generic, the movie is sloppy in both telling the story and in editing. It focuses on too many unimportant little things and never on anything significant, and with things that you think are significant never pay off. Such as the painting that could be considered a co-star with how much screen time it was given. It's "role" was explained in about 5 seconds in the end which had little to do with anything and offered more questions than answers.
"Satan's Princess" seems like it wanted to do a lot but actually did very little, like the failed attempts at being erotic. I don't know, maybe I'm wrong; maybe this was a quick paycheck for everyone from some producer or studio that wanted to get a movie out there to cash in on some trend, or just to get a movie out there. From a movie that had a number of seasoned professionals working on it, "Satan's Princess" certainly is worse than it should have been but about on par with what you'd expect. Minus the ridiculous and over-the-top ending that involves Nicole shedding her human skin and revealing herself to look like a creature that predates the one from the "Species" movies. Had the rest of the movie been more like the ending, then this movie could have been something special. Actually, it probably would have been terrible but it would have at least been interesting.