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The Snorkel

UK 1958
produced by
Michael Carreras, Anthony Nelson Keys (associate) for Clarion Films/Hammer
directed by Guy Green
starring Mandy Miller, Peter van Eyck, Betta St. John, Grégoire Aslan, William Franklyn, Marie Burke, Henri Vidon
story by Anthony Dawson, screenplay by Peter Myers, Jimmy Sangster, music by Francis Chagrin, conducted by John Hollingsworth

review by
Mike Haberfelner

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Somewhere on the Italian Riviera: Madge Decker has died, and it was a very apparent suicide - the room was locked from the inside, all windows were taped shut, and there was nobody else in with her. And yet her daughter Candy (Mandy Miller) suspects her stepfather Paul (Peter van Eyck) to have killed her ... even if anything seems to point into another direction, including the fact that his passport proves he was in France at the time of his wife's death. That said, Candy is of course totally right: Paul has drugged his wife, turned ont he gas, then he hid under the floorboards with a snorkel getting him air from the outside. And he also snorkeled from France to Italy to have an alibi, not a big deal since his wife lived close to the border.

Of course, nobody believes Candy, not even her companion Jean (Betta St.John), who more and more falls for Paul's charms, so she picks up investigations on her own ... with very little success at first. Then though, on the beach, she sees someone snorkeling, remembers the snorkel she saw among Paul's things, and just puts two and two together - and now Paul knows it's his time to move, so she lures Jean back to her mother's house, tells her he has found her mother's good-bye letter, then drugs her and tries to kill her like he killed her mother. But Jean, who has suspected Candy would try to commit suicide, and Wilson (William Franklyn), local British diplomat, break into the room just in time to save Candy from death - while Paul has already gone into hiding under the floorboards. Of course, when Candy tells them about Paul's scheme, they pay little heed to her stories, think she just wants to divert attention from her suicide attempt, but to humour her, they look for Paul to prove he isn't there ... and of course can't find him - but while they are looking for him, they move an especially heavy piece of furniture over the floorboards he's under and then don't move it back again ... ouch!


A very decent little suspense thriller during which nothing much might be happening really, plus with the killer given away at the beginning, there isn't too much of a mystery element, either, and yet, the film manages to maintain tension throughout, and manages to weave a few surprises into its not entirely unpredictable story - and add to that a very good cast and subtle directorial effort, and you've got yourself a very nice thriller.


review © by Mike Haberfelner


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Robots and rats,
demons and potholes,
cuddly toys and
shopping mall Santas,
love and death and everything in between,
Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

is all of that.


Tales to Chill
Your Bones to
a collection of short stories and mini-plays
ranging from the horrific to the darkly humourous,
from the post-apocalyptic
to the weirdly romantic,
tales that will give you a chill and maybe a chuckle, all thought up by
the twisted mind of
screenwriter and film reviewer
Michael Haberfelner.


Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

the new anthology by
Michael Haberfelner


Out now from




On the same day
a Burglar wants to kill you
and your Ex wants
to make up ...
... and for the life of it,
you can't decide


A Killer Conversation

produced by and starring
Melanie Denholme
directed by
David V.G. Davies
written by
Michael Haberfelner
Ryan Hunter and
Rudy Barrow

out now on DVD