This is the climax in mind-chilling terror!
A French nobleman deserts his wife because of an ancient family secret.
A French nobleman deserts his wife because of an ancient family secret.
So...shit, this is really awkward. I'm no good at this sort of thing. I guess it's best if I'm just honest with you. The thing is, I kind of worship Sharon Tate now. It just happened. Well, yeah. And also Barbara Steele. See, that's it exactly! Why should I have to give it up to one and only one infernal goat god!?! I guess what I'm trying to say here is, I want to see other people.
Now, about that contract I signed...
The haunting sound of chimes ringing deep in a hollow, where a solitary tree stands, waiting for your sacrifice. This has some fucking atmosphere.
'In his mind there is a vision wand'ring
Through the forest town
Telling of riches only given if through
The woods the way is found.'
psychologically-fractured, gothic castle occult murder party. kinda shocked i hadn't even heard of this.
A family is led to an estate in France with vineyards that haven't produced for two years. Since the estate is centuries old and its owners are linked to an ancient pagan cult, the only remedy to restore the vineyards is a blood sacrifice. Everyone seems to know this except the part played by Deborah Kerr as the wife of David Niven, the current owner, who's mood changes to dread once he hears of the crop failures. At the chateau, Kerr and the children meet a witch played by Sharon Tate in a hypnotic role. She's never out of her character, a steely portrayal of a witch as cold as ice. The film mixes some horror in with pervasive atmosphere…
I've seen quite a few J. Lee Thompson films now and I'm left wondering exactly what the general critical opinion is on him.
I tend to be out of touch with these things, but I have to say that he's a director that has rarely disappointed me. Admittedly I haven't seen all that many of his films from the end of his career where he and Charles Bronson phoned in a bunch of half-arsed action films together, but his versatility and consistency from earlier in his career continues to impress me.
Here we see him tackling a devil-worshipping horror film, a task that seemed quite thankless when it was released…
Don’t be fooled by the poster’s assertion that “This is the climax in mind-chilling terror!” It really isn’t.
The film starts with a 1960s jazz harp party in Paris, which really got my attention, but it doesn’t continue in this vein. The Marquis Philip de something (David Niven) receives a note informing him that the harvest has failed in his home village, which seems to be clinging to the feudal system. He must hurry back to his huge ancestral chateau at once to deal with the crisis, accompanied against his wishes by his wife Catherine (Deborah Kerr) and his children. The film is mostly from Catherine’s point of view and she quickly becomes worried about the weirdness of the locals,…
50 years ago tonight, a group of cunts and a dipshit hippy Texan destroyed several lives. Because of countless factors, they ultimately won. Movies, songs, books, documentaries, interview after interview, podcast series’s, merchandise. Jesus fucking Christ. They should’ve all been dead decades ago. Sharon Tate should be 76, Paul Richard Polanski should be 50, and Roman shouldn’t be a molesting bastard. But here we are.
Yes Tarantino, scoop me up in your spastic arms and toss me into your world of 1969.
'Am I seeking, or am I being sought?' (David Niven as Philippe de Montfaucon)
A chillingly effective and visually resplendent spooky melodrama from the British wing of MGM's operation, very flashily directed by an on form J. Lee Thompson, one of the most dependable craftsmen in the movie business. The film's artistic success - sadly, it failed at the box office - is even more remarkable when you consider that the film was almost in the can before an injury to the originally cast leading lady (Kim Novak) necessitated her being replaced by Deborah Kerr for a series of extensive reshoots. The French Gothic castle setting is tailor-made for creepiness and Lee Thompson doesn't put a foot wrong; his framing…
Reminiscent at times of contemporary films like THE HAUNTING, the occult films of Mario Bava, SECONDS, and THE WICKER MAN, EYE OF THE DEVIL is a highly entertaining bit of British and French Satanism. With an editing style and camera work that were almost ahead of their time, this film gets a lot of mileage out of dark shadows, old fortresses, and creepy townsfolk. If there's one flaw in the film, it would have to be somewhat unbelievable stupidity of Deborah Kerr, who can't seem to understand that her children are probably in danger.
Also, is this possibly a mild inspiration for HOT FUZZ?
Predates both The Wicker Man and Rosemary's Baby but has flavours of both flowing through it. There is always something about a 'woman can see something sinister afoot but everyone thinks she's hysterical' trope that feels so satisfying when it comes to the unveiling of evil, and I don't think I'll ever get bored of it.
An atmospheric spooky gothic house creepy cult psychological thriller, it's like The Haunting meets Rosemary's Baby, features great cinematography and editing flourishes and sports a dynamite cast including Deborah Kerr, David Niven, Donald Pleasence, and David Hemmings wielding a mean bow and arrow along with his eerie and witchy sister Sharon Tate, who is absolutely fantastic.
Opening with a very art house disconcerting quick cut montage "Eye of the Devil" establishes itself as a movie with higher stylistic aspirations than your typical gothic chiller. David Niven plays Philippe de Montfaucon who has to head to his castle due to a bad season at his vineyard. He strongly urges wife Deborah Kerr and their two children to stay home but she comes anyway. It's immediately apparent that the farmers are part of some kind of cult and that local creepy/beautiful couple Sharon Tate and David Hemmings are up to absolutely no good.
At the time this movie was criticized for being over directed but I think it's visuals are it's strongest quality. The camerawork has a lovely…
I first watched this seven years ago and I don't remember it being this bad oh my god...Everyone's acting was so cringe even David Niven and Deborah Kerr.
A two hour close-up of Sharon Tate would have been better than whatever tf this was.
Best summation I've heard of this one is 'It's The Wicker Man before there's a Wicker Man.'
It begins with the Marquis de Montfauçon being notified that the vineyards back home in Belenac have failed and 'It's time'.
While not as overtly pagan as Wicker Man, we still catch that Belenac is of the Old Faith. Donald Pleasence does a great job as Father Dominic who's also the pagan High Priest. This one's also Sharon Tate's first role.
Very much worth a watch especially if you're doing a double feature with The Wicker Man.
Nicely mischievous and elusive gothic horror with a strong side order of community paranoia and cultish behaviour. Introduces Sharon Tate, who nearly steals it with just a few (literally) hypnotic scenes.
Deborah Kerr and David Niven rule the roost, though.
i love the fact sharon tate plays a witch but that's it
Occasionally entertaining and intermittently creepy little pagan horror film, but severely derailed by a highly suspect editing scheme. The film cuts across time, in and out of reality, hallucinations, and memories, and through a metric tonne of angles from overcovered scenes. I gather that some of this might be due to the need to replace original star Kim Novak with Kerr, necessitating lots of reshoots and workarounds, but it results in some truly disorienting sequences that detract from the film's legibility. That's a real shame because this is, otherwise, a very well-shot and atmospheric film with a few strong performances (and many others that are enjoyable due to how highly-cranked they are in terms of being hammy or camp).
Spooky British gothic repressed horniness fest, with all the sexual and cultural repression transmuted into the sultry eyes of Sharon Tate and the strong arms of David Hemmings. Very ingeniously casts Deborah Kerr and David Nivens as the squarest people on Earth and then breaks them over 90 minutes. Very thick coat of mood that is frequently ruptured by some forceful editing. Goes exactly where you think it will from the start, but it hits that mark with gusto.
A good folk horror movie that’s like a rough draft for "The Wicker Man." Features an outstanding cast and is effectively directed, but is almost scuppered by structural issues.
The main problem is that the heroine is essentially a passive observer and the least interesting character, with no dramatic decisions to make, and the second act in particular suffers from this. Restructuring the movie around the David Niven character's perspective – he *does* have dramatic choices to make – would’ve made it far more effective.
The movie manages to overcome this problem, as J. Lee Thompson works overtime to maintain visual interest with aggressive camerawork – it’s fun to watch, even when the drama flounders.
Other good reasons to check this out include Sharon Tate and David Hemmings, who slink through the movie in supporting roles, looking almost impossibly glamorous, and Donald Pleasence, who brings the soft-spoken menace.
One way or another Kim Novak's exiting from the film proved her decision a rational one. By all account, Martin Ranshoff was one of the last control freaks before Hollywood became laxer. The camera work looks like something out of 1980s pop-rap MTV thing. Sharon Tate as Odile isn't bad, but she sure is cunning and would get you in a thrill. The film editing is rather choppy
Between this and The Innocents, Deborah Kerr just can't seem to catch a break.
I liked it better than midsommar...
technically excellent; extremely into the conceit that an occulted truth and worship has always and will always exist parallel or interleaved with what's apparent of things. u just gotta be creepy, in your heart
David Niven & Deborah Kerr are like the most english couple you could possibly cast, and they cast them to play French aristocrats...
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