13 March 2012 | LeeVanNero
Years Ahead Of It's Time
Having recently bought a copy of the 2010 release of this lost gem, finally available fully uncut and beautifully presented in anamorphic widescreen 1.78:1 - Odeon Entertainmant ODNF162 - I can't recommend it enough. Taking into consideration the very strict censorship laws and general climate the time of it's production, it's easy to see why it was butchered and suppressed at the time of it's initial release in 1972, the Mary Whitehouse brigade would have soiled themselves collectively at the subject matter alone. And the murder scenes, whilst fairly tame compared to some in todays more enlightened times, were way out there for early 70's Britain.
It's not the most polished of films, but the directing is pretty good and the acting pretty solid throughout - with a convincing enough ratio of ham, menace and believability - with the script and storyline excellent. Overall the results, particularly when taking the fairly small budget into consideration, really are very, very good indeed. Which is why I honestly think this film was years ahead of it's time.
An essential addition to any Brit Horror collection - it's a proto-slasher of sorts, imo - and also to anyone with an interest in looking at the darker and less positive sides of religion and it's very strong tendencies towards brainwashing, mind control and even abuse. I'd also recommend it to anyone who just loves a good well made and sincere film, however if you're just a cannibals & zombies or shoot 'em ups only freak, don't bother, it's definitely not for you.