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The Damned
These are the Damned

UK 1962
produced by
Anthony Hinds, Michael Carreras (executive), Anthony Nelson Keys (associate) for Hammer
directed by Joseph Losey
starring Macdonald Carey, Shirley Anne Field, Viveca Lindfors, Alexander Knox, Oliver Reed, Walter Gotell, James Villiers, Tom Kempinski, Kenneth Cope, Brian Oulton, Barbara Everest, Allan McClelland, James Maxwell, Rachel Clay, Caroline Sheldon, Rebecca Dignam, Siobhan Taylor, Nicholas Clay, Kit Williams, Christopher Witty, David Palmer, John Thompson
screenplay by Evan Jones, based on the novel by H.L. Lawrence, music by James Bernard, sculpts by Elisabeth Frink

review by
Mike Haberfelner



American tourist in England Simon Wells (Macdonald Carey) has gotten in a kerfuffle with a gang of thugs, so much so that he saw it necessary to take flight by boat - with Joan (Shirley Anne Field), sister of gangleader King (Oliver Reed) as his unlikely shipmate, with her being desparate to escape her brother. This only drives King wild though and he's now hell-bent on hunting them down - which leads to a finale at some cliffs where Wells, Joan and King all go over and probably would have drowned before long if they weren't saved by a bunch of kids. The kids, all 11 years of age, are a strange bunch though, their skin is ice cold, they claim to have no parents and are brought up at a nearby facility where they have no direct contact to other humans but receive their education via video screens - and it soon becomes clear that they are part of a secret gouvernment experiment led by mysterious Bernard (Alexander Knox), who claims to be their benefactor. Wells, Joan and King bury their hatchet to help the children escape - an escape that's unfortunately short-lived as the kids are all highly radioactive, and being in their presence alone kills Wells, Joan and King before long, with all the kids quickly collected again and all other witnesses to the goings-on shot dead.

 

Now one can't deny how great the film looks. It's expert camerawork get the most out of the beautiful location, its direction is aesthetically flawless, and a subplot about a sculptor (Viveca Lindfors) allows for the inclusion of many an unusual artwork by Elisabeth Frink - all of which really defies the film's moderate budget. On top of that, the film profits from some very poignant dialogue - and yet the whole thing is somewhat let down by its rather silly Cold War propaganda plot that pretends to make much more sense than it actually does. Now seen from today's perspective that's endearing as well, as a sort of time capsule, and I won't deny the film is entertaining enough as it is, one would just wish a movie as good looking as this one would have been graced with a better plot.

 

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review © by Mike Haberfelner

 

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Thanks for watching !!!

 

 

In times of uncertainty of a possible zombie outbreak, a woman has to decide between two men - only one of them's one of the undead.

 

There's No Such Thing as Zombies
starring
Luana Ribeira, Rudy Barrow and Rami Hilmi
special appearances by
Debra Lamb and Lynn Lowry

 

directed by
Eddie Bammeke

written by
Michael Haberfelner

produced by
Michael Haberfelner, Luana Ribeira and Eddie Bammeke

 

now streaming at

Amazon

Amazon UK

Vimeo

 

 

 

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
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