11 user 34 critic

The Black Torment (1964)

A lord returns to his manor with his new wife, to hear rumors that he had already secretly returned and had committed several murders. Has he lost his mind, or is something dark afoot?

On Disc

at Amazon

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

The Legacy (1978)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.7/10 X  

A millionaire, a million-dollar prostitute, a star-maker, a nation-killer, a woman whose lusts are as cold as graveyard snow...Five of the most powerful people in the world, and Maggie ... See full summary »

Director: Richard Marquand
Stars: Katharine Ross, Sam Elliott, John Standing
Spasmo (1974)
Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

Christian (Robert Hoffman) and his girlfriend are taking a walk on a deserted beach when they discover a woman's body lying. A closer look proves that she's alive. The next day Christian ... See full summary »

Director: Umberto Lenzi
Stars: Robert Hoffmann, Suzy Kendall, Ivan Rassimov
Horror | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A young coed (Nan Barlow) uses her winter vacation to research a paper on witchcraft in New England. Her professor recommends that she spend her time in a small village called Whitewood. He... See full summary »

Director: John Llewellyn Moxey
Stars: Patricia Jessel, Dennis Lotis, Christopher Lee
Don't Be Afraid of the Dark (TV Movie 1973)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A young couple inherits an old mansion inhabited by small demon-like creatures who are determined to make the wife one of their own.

Director: John Newland
Stars: Kim Darby, Jim Hutton, Barbara Anderson
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

In post-war Britain, food rationing continues, leading a married couple to become involved in the flourishing bacon black market.

Director: Malcolm Mowbray
Stars: Michael Palin, Maggie Smith, Denholm Elliott
Crime | Mystery | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Carolyn Ellenson double-crosses five people who cross her path and is murdered by one of them. After marrying Harlow Grant for his money, she leaves him but carries on her infidelities so ... See full summary »

Director: Franklin Adreon
Stars: Marie Windsor, John Archer, Patric Knowles
Horror | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

Dr. Laurience, a brilliant but unstable scientist experimenting with transferring minds, becomes vengeful when his magnate patron withdraws his support.

Director: Robert Stevenson
Stars: Boris Karloff, Anna Lee, John Loder
Drama | Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

Set in France in 1880. A series of murders is attributed to a Wolf Man.

Director: George King
Stars: Tod Slaughter, John Warwick, Aubrey Mallalieu
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

Victim of an obscene caller becomes obsessed with her fantasy of ?him and attempts to track down IRL.

Director: Nelson Lyon
Stars: Sarah Kennedy, Norman Rose, James Harder
Loot (1970)
Comedy | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  

Based on the play by Joe Orton, this film follows the adventures of two pals who have pulled off a bank robbery and have to hide the loot. Fortunately one of them works in a funeral parlor ... See full summary »

Director: Silvio Narizzano
Stars: Lee Remick, Richard Attenborough, Hywel Bennett
Who? (1974)
Mystery | Sci-Fi | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

After American scientist is severely injured and scarred in a car crash along the border with East Germany, he is captured by East German military. The scientists use metal implants to save him. Once back in the States no one can tell if it's really him so an intelligence specialist must determine who is under the "mask".

Director: Jack Gold
Stars: Elliott Gould, Trevor Howard, Joseph Bova
The Unseen (1980)
Horror | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.2/10 X  

A trio of female reporters find themselves staying overnight in a house occupied by a hostile being lurking in the basement.

Director: Danny Steinmann
Stars: Stephen Furst, Barbara Bach, Sydney Lassick


Cast overview, first billed only:
Heather Sears ...
Lady Elizabeth Fordyke
John Turner ...
Sir Richard Fordyke
Ann Lynn ...
Peter Arne ...
Raymond Huntley ...
Colonel John Wentworth
Annette Whiteley ...
Francis De Wolff ...
Black John (as Francis de Wolff)
Joseph Tomelty ...
Sir Giles Fordyke
Ostler - Regis
Roger Croucher ...
Apprentice - Brian
Charles Houston ...
Derek Newark ...
Coachman - Tom
Kathy McDonald ...
Kate (as Kathy MacDonald)
Jack Taylor ...


A lord returns to his manor with his new wife, to hear rumors that he had already secretly returned and had committed several murders. Has he lost his mind, or is something dark afoot?

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


What was the deadly power that desired and devoured the women of Fordyke? See more »


Horror | Mystery


See all certifications »




Release Date:

1 March 1965 (Denmark)  »

Also Known As:

Estate of Insanity  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The original UK cinema version was cut by the BBFC to edit the opening forest murder. All later releases feature the same cut print. See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

THE BLACK TORMENT (Robert Hartford-Davies, 1964) ***
7 October 2011 | by (Naxxar, Malta) – See all my reviews

Though owing a bit to the Gothic tradition of Hammer Horror, this British ghost story is actually more attuned to the cycle made in this vein and running parallel to it emanating from Italy. Apart from the color scheme (courtesy of cinematographer Peter Newbrook, later director of the literate horror film THE ASPHYX {1972}) and languid pace, obvious links include the haunted protagonist (with many a skeleton in his family closet), the innocent heroine, the killing spree, the apparitions (which are usually revealed to be far closer to home and reality than one could have foreseen), etc.

Leading lady Heather Sears had just appeared in Hammer's underrated version of THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA (1962). Her male counterpart, John Turner (and resembling John Payne quite a bit actually), was new to me but he certainly left an impression – making for one of the most irascible heroes in any film, constantly blowing his top at everyone and everything, sometimes without provocation!; indeed, the whole unfolds at a somewhat hysterical pitch which seems to be an idiosyncrasy of the director. As it happens, this is one of a handful of interesting genre efforts from him: the others are CORRUPTION (1968), THE FIEND aka BEWARE, MY BRETHREN (1972) – both of which I am familiar with – and the as-yet-unwatched BLOODSUCKERS aka INCENSE FOR THE DAMNED (1972); for the record, I also own and still need to check out his star-studded comedy THE SANDWICH MAN (1966). Anyway, also on hand here are Peter Arne (seemingly devoted to the estate's invalid master and his son but unsurprisingly proving to be villainous), Patrick Troughton (as Turner's stable-master), Raymond Huntley (as a seasoned Colonel also serving as Magistrate in the community) and Francis de Wolff (as a stout blacksmith who acts gruffly and confrontationally towards Turner upon the latter's return from abroad with a second wife over a series of apparent hauntings/murders).

The hero's father is cared for by the sister (Ann Lynn) of Turner's first bride – who, it seems committed suicide by leaping from a window because she could not produce a male heir (again, this alone should immediately alert one to her role in the elaborate revenge scheme!). Another party who comes into play towards the end is a man who is the spitting image of the hero, a twin whom the old man kept institutionalized (he is repeatedly described as an "imbecile") and a secret to everybody, but who was 'reclaimed' for their own devious ends once Arne and Lynn take control of the household following their master's debilitating condition; with this in mind, the family tree (called "Bible"!?) and motto (which pretty much conditioned the extreme actions of Turner's late spouse) have much to do with the proceedings. As I said, we get a number of motiveless murders of wayward wenches, as well as one that is clearly premeditated (the old man is found hanging from a chandelier after his empty wheelchair has come crashing down the stairs!) – not to mention eerie sightings outside the window, with the 'phantom' even giving chase to the cry of "Murderer" and, for the grand finale, a gun-shot wound to the face plus a rather well-choreographed swordfight!

6 of 8 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
The Black Torment DVD jamesraeburn2003
Discuss The Black Torment (1964) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: