9 January 2014 | BA_Harrison
Not nearly as much fun as it should be.
Catholic priest Father Xavier Meldrum (Anthony Sharp) becomes obsessed with parishioner Jenny Welch (Susan Penhaligon) who unwisely pays a visit to his confessional after a break-up with her boyfriend. Excited by the gorgeous young woman, but unable to have her, Meldrum is driven to kill using rosary beads, a flaming incense burner and poisoned communion wafers as his weapons.
House of Mortal Sin sees British exploitation legends David McGillivray and Pete Walker having fun at the expense of Catholicism, depicting the murderous antics of a sexually frustrated Catholic priest with a mother complex whose mind has been twisted by a lifetime of repressed carnal urges. It should be a whole lot of salacious silliness, but sadly falls short of the mark.
Despite the film's deliberately controversial subject matter and plenty of sadistic violence, House of Mortal Sin is actually one of my least favourite Walker movies thanks to a dreary narrative, a plodding pace and surprisingly uninspired direction. Penhaligon is lovely as the poor subject of Meldrum's attention but is given little to do other than look frightened; likewise, Sheila Keith is wasted in yet another role that calls for her to be cruel and emotionless.