Roaring Twenties


Though not one of the great Hammer classics, this is an OK movie, mostly thanks to John Hurt and, as usual, Peter Cushing. (Pity that the opening scene is about ten times more effective than the finale.)

What made it more interesting is that it appears to be a bit of a curiosity: I've seen quite a few Hammer/Amicus productions which had a (vaguely) Victorian setting, but this is the first I saw taking place in the 1920s. The party scene and the automobile race are Jazz Age clichés, but looked good to me and worked well with the story. Quite nice for a change.

Since Hammer usually made the most of their modest resources, I'm wondering if there are other productions which recycled the 20s theme?

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Hi vertigothic70! This might be a bit late in the day for an answer, but I believe the Hammer movie The Devil Rides Out was also set in the twenties but has no relation (through shared sets or crew as in The Reptile and Plague of the Zombies) to this film. This actually isn't a Hammer movie, although it was written by Anthony Hinds under his usual pseudonym of John Elder, directed by Freddie Francis and starred Peter Cushing. It was in fact the last effort produced by Anthony Hinds' short-lived Tyburn film productions company, which produced just three movies in the mid-70s, this, Legend of the Werewolf (which is actually semi-decent) and a movie called Persecution which I am yet to see. Might go and try to track that down now actually.






Reality is the new fiction they say, truth is truer these days, truth is man-made

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Hi stupid_flanders!
Sorry I didn't get back to you sooner, thank you for your reply! The Devil Rides Out is excellent, but I have to confess, I had to take another look at it after reading your post. The era that's supposed to be set in seems rather more vague (actually, I would have thought 30s-ish) but could well be the 20s, I suppose. Even if technically, The Ghoul was a Tyburn production - and I wasn't even aware of that, as you rightly guessed - with all the Hammer regulars involved, I wouldn't be surprised if there was some recycling of props. I don't know if I'll take the time to watch both movies back-to-back and look closely though! Still, there are worse ways to spend a rainy Sunday afternoon.

Have you tracked down Persecution yet? It might make a nice double feature with The Uncanny, I think.



clowns to the left of me, jokers to the right, here I am...

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I agree Devil Rides Out could easily be 30s by its look, according to the info I have read about it it's set in 1929, so right on the cusp. It might specify this at the beginning but I can't remember, would have to rewatch it which as you say is hardly a chore.

I'm having trouble finding a copy of Persecution, all three Tyburn films are hard to find, I had to buy The Ghoul on NTSC VHS imported from the States (although I've since recorded it onto disk off a rare British TV showing) and my copy of Legend of the Werewolf was bought as a bootleg off ebay. Are you a big fan of all these old British gothic horrors in general? What are your favourites?





Reality is the new fiction they say, truth is truer these days, truth is man-made

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My apologies, stupid_flanders, I hadn't realized that it was quite so long ago that you had written; I meant to reply sooner.

Well, on the off-chance that you're still interested in my answer to your question - I'm a fan of horror movies in general, and from the time of about 1960 to 1980, I would give almost anything a try. I prefer films with a certain old-fashioned look about them though, Gothic aesthetics and atmosphere appeal to me a lot more than gore. With a few notable Continental exceptions, I think the British haven't been equalled at doing those period pieces.

The film that sparked my interest in the first place, when I saw it on tv late one night years ago, is still a favourite of mine - And Now the Screaming Starts! (I prefer to think of it as Bride of Fengriffen; 1973). I'm sure I've seen better movies, but I have a special fondness for this one, with all its flaws. A truly excellent film, on the other hand, is The Blood on Satan's Claw (1971). Among the many Hammer films to choose from, I think my three faves would be The Gorgon - it always seems to me that it's got something of a fairy tale about it; Demons of the Mind (1972), and Hands of the Ripper (1971). The exploration of the murkiness of the human mind goes so well with stuffy Victorian interiors! On a similar note, finally, The Asphyx (1973). - I've just looked that one up here on IMDb... Glendale Productions... apparently they did one other film, Crucible of Terror (1971). Never heard of that one before, one more to look for...

That small selection doesn't mean I'm not as fond of vampires, zombies or creature features as the next person... Anyway, I'm by no means an expert, and luckily for me, there are still plenty of horror movies I have yet to watch.






clowns to the left of me, jokers to the right, here I am...

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Article on the history of Tyburn Films the makers of THE GHOUL - http://horrorpedia.com/2013/10/02/tyburn-films-production-company/

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Thank you!


clowns to the left of me, jokers to the right, here I am...

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