An ex-con who's taken part in the robbery of a racetrack is caught and sent back to prison, but he won't tell his fellow gang members where he's stashed the loot. The gang kidnaps his ... See full summary »
Simon Ashby is a wealthy psychotic who is is coddled by his aunt in their palatial mansion outside of London. One day, Ashby's long lost brother mysteriously arrives at the house. But is ... See full summary »
Dutch painter Jan-Van Rooyer hurries to keep a rendezvous with Jacquleine Cousteau, an elegant, sophisticated Frenchwoman, slightly his elder, whose relationship with him had turned from ... See full summary »
Two escaped convicts (Robert Shaw and Malcolm McDowell) are on the run in an unnamed Latin American country. But everywhere they go, they are followed and hounded by a menacing black ... See full summary »
Legal and illegal criminality. An American tourist with a boat is robbed by a gang of teenager boys, assisted by the leader's sister. But soon afterward she jumps to the victim's boat to escape her brother's incestuous jealousy. The couple fly together and is hunted by the entire gang. Both happen to enter high-classified military territory. There might be a third and atomic world war, after which no ordinary man could survive. But now and then children are born who are "naturally" radio-active and have cold blood. They might survive in the post-war world and carry on mankind. They are fetched and brought to an underground construction where they are educated by TV. They are told that they are on a space ship moving toward the earth, which they should eventually colonize. This military project seems to be a failure because of a high mortality among the children. - The military soon finds the gang. The couple finds the children and tries to help them to escape. This situation will ... Written by
Max Scharnberg, Stockholm, Sweden
The film was delayed for two years and was not shown in Britain until the Spring of 1963, when it was released as the lower half of a Hammer Films double-bill with Maniac (1963). It had been cut by Hammer (against Joseph Losey's wishes) from 96 minutes to 87 minutes, and it was cut by ten minutes more again when it was finally shown in America in 1965. However, the missing footage has been restored to the film for its DVD version and for 21st-century television showings. See more »
(at around 38mins) When Neilson wrestles King to the ground, a person's shadow (cameraman?) can be seen to move on the ground next to them. See more »
One of Hammer's weirdest and most memorable films!
A lot of great horror films were produced by Hammer Studios, and The Damned certainly ranks up there both as one of the studios best, and as one of the weirdest. The film is a mix of drama, thriller, horror and sci-fi and is inventive and refreshing in the way it plays out and I guarantee that if you go into this film without first finding out what it's about, you'll never guess where it will take you! The plot structure basically has two main threads to it and neither one is related to the other, but the film pulls them together well. The first plot we are introduced to focuses on Joan, a young woman who gets involved with an American tourist. He gets beaten up by a gang of thugs and it soon transpires that Joan is the sister of the leader of them! The two run away with the angry brother and his gang hot on their tails. The second side of the plot concerns nine children who are being brought up in isolation inside a secret military base as they have somehow been born radioactive. The two plots combine when the American and his girl stumble into the base with the brother after them.
This film was always in danger of becoming messy considering how the story changes dramatically half way through, but it actually flows really well and the story manages to keep the first plot running even when the second one takes centre stage. The themes of the story do get lost somewhat under what we are directly seeing on screen, but 'The Damned' is a very fitting title as the movie deals with a situation born out of the need for a contingency plan in case of nuclear war. The fact that the plot focuses on both sanctioned and unsanctioned criminals makes it more interesting. The film is also very haunting; the children themselves echo those in the classic Village of the Damned and the gloomy plot line gives off its own formidable atmosphere, which is reinforced well by the way the children are treated in their prison/home. The central cast is excellent with Shirley Anne Field and Macdonald Carey getting good support from the always memorable Oliver Reed. The children give some of the best performances in the film and manage to capture what you would expect of children in their situation very well indeed. Overall, The Damned is one of Hammer's most strange and surreal films; but it marks a welcome change and it's not a film I will forget in a hurry. Don't miss out on this one!
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