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Curse of the Demon (1957)

Night of the Demon (original title)
Approved | | Fantasy, Horror, Mystery | July 1958 (USA)
American professor John Holden arrives in London for a parapsychology conference, only to find himself investigating the mysterious actions of Devil-worshiper Julian Karswell.



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Maurice Denham ...
Reginald Beckwith ...
Lloyd Williamson
Peter Elliott ...
Rosamund Greenwood ...
Inspector Mottram
Lloyd Lamble ...
Detective Simmons
Peter Hobbes ...
Charles Lloyd Pack ...
Chemist (as Charles Lloyd-Pack)


Dr. John Holden ventures to London to attend a paranormal psychology symposium with the intention to expose devil cult leader Julian Karswell. Holden is a skeptic and does not believe in Karswell's power. Nonetheless, he accepts an invitation to stay at Karswell's estate, along with Joanna Harrington, niece of Holden's confidant who was electrocuted in a bizarre automobile accident. Karswell secretly slips a parchment into Holden's papers that might possibly be a death curse. Recurring strange events finally strike fear into Holden, who believes that his only hope is to pass the parchment back to Karswell to break the demonic curse. Written by Rick Gregory <rag.apa@email.apa.org>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Horror! Most terrifying story the screen has ever told! See more »


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Parents Guide:





Release Date:

July 1958 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Curse of the Demon  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


| (American Release is 13 mins shorter than original)

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


In interviews regarding this film, Dana Andrews credits the story to Oliver Onions. The story is actually based on "Casting the Runes" by M.R. James. See more »


In a close-up scene of the airplane (plane model actually), the string that is used to guide it is visible. See more »


[first lines]
Narrator: It has been written since the beginning of time, even unto these ancient stones, that evil supernatural creatures exist in a world of darkness. And it is also said man using the magic power of the ancient runic symbols can call forth these powers of darkness, the demons of Hell.
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Plain Song
Music by Fela Sowande
Chappell Recorded Music Library
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User Reviews

To demon or not to demon
29 October 2004 | by See all my reviews

I thought I had heard awhile back that Jacques Tourneur didn't want to show the demon. Does anybody know if this is so? Having worked with Val Lewton, this would seem possible. If so, it's a shame Tourneur isn't around to put a director's cut on the DVD instead of Curse Of The Demon which is a little redundant being on the same DVD as Night Of The Demon. I found the demon scary when I was 12 years old and would not have enjoyed the film as much without it. Now, of course, the film would seem better without it. The atmosphere of Tourneur's work that I've seen; this,I Walked With A Zombie, Out Of The Past, and that Twighlight Zone episode (one of the best) of the elderly lady getting calls from her deceased husband consistently has that great nocturnal, shadowy and mysterious quality to it. This body of work alone is enough to make him one of my favorite directors. Even if this isn't one of Dana Andrews best performances, his stubborn skepticism is convincing enough to contrast nicely with Carswell's over politeness. As old horror movies go; this ranks up there with The (original) Haunting, Eyes Without A Face, Black Sunday and early Universals as the best among the old black and whites for me. Strangely enough, I happened to have watched it earlier this (yesterday now) evening October 28th which IS the night of the demon. Coincidence? **** out of *****

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