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The Conqueror Worm (1968)

Witchfinder General (original title)
Unrated | | Biography, Drama, Horror | May 1968 (UK)
A young soldier seeks to put an end to the evils caused by a vicious witch hunter.

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Writers:

(screenplay), (screenplay) | 2 more credits »
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1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Richard Marshall
Rupert Davies ...
John Lowes
Hilary Heath ...
Sara (as Hilary Dwyer)
Robert Russell ...
John Stearne
Nicky Henson ...
Swallow
Tony Selby ...
Salter
...
Fisherman
Godfrey James ...
Webb
Michael Beint ...
Captain Gordon
John Trenaman ...
Harcourt (as John Treneman)
Bill Maxwell ...
Gifford
Paul Ferris ...
Paul (as Morris Jar)
Maggie Kimberly ...
Elizabeth
Peter Haigh ...
Lavenham Magistrate
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Storyline

England is torn in civil strife as the Royalists battle the Parliamentary Party for control. This conflict distracts people from rational thought and allows unscrupulous men to gain local power by exploiting village superstitions. One of these men is Matthew Hopkins, who tours the land offering his services as a persecutor of witches. Aided by his sadistic accomplice John Stearne, he travels from city to city and wrenches confessions from "witches" in order to line his pockets and gain sexual favors. When Hopkins persecutes a priest, he incurs the wrath of Richard Marshall, who is engaged to the priest's niece. Risking treason by leaving his military duties, Marshall relentlessly pursues the evil Hopkins and his minion Stearne. Written by Ed Sutton <esutton@mindspring.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

LEAVE THE CHILDREN AT HOME...If YOU are squeamish stay home with them! See more »

Genres:

Biography | Drama | Horror | War

Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

May 1968 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

The Conqueror Worm  »

Box Office

Budget:

$175,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

On the first day of filming, Vincent Price fell from his horse. Director Michael Reeves refused to see him, hoping that angering Price would help the actor make his character more fierce. See more »

Goofs

The end titles conclude with the familiar, "All persons depicted... entirely fictional... any resemblance to actual persons living or dead is entirely coincidental" -  and yet not only was title character a real person, but also the film features an appearance by Oliver Cromwell! See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
[United States Conqueror Worm versions]
Matthew Hopkins: [voiceover] LO! 't is a gala night/Within the lonesome latter years./An angel throng, bewinged, bedight/In veils, and drowned in tears,/Sit in a theatre to see/A play of hopes and fears,/While the orchestra breathes fitfully/The music of the spheres."
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Evil Easter 3: The Final Easter (2013) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

HAUNTING AND UNFORGETTABLE
4 August 1999 | by (CARDIFF,WALES) – See all my reviews

This supreme 60's movie is of a type that the U.K.could probably not make any more,obsessed as it is with making contemporary movies about drug addicts and similar social misfits.Matthew Hopkins was a misfit too but his story is a compelling one and is based on historical fact.There was a Matthew Hopkins and he was the Witchfinder General in the time of Oliver Cromwell.This movie is not horror but it is genuinely horrifying,it is not an action/adventure yet it has great action throughout.It is not a love story yet it has some of the most lyrical lovemaking scenes ever filmed.It is not a Western though it has much in common with the story structure of one. "WITCHFINDER GENERAL" is unique and the work of a young director who even had he not died shortly after may never have equalled his work here.The cast is uniformly excellent with Ian Ogilvy as dashing a hero as Price is a dastardly villain.For soundtrack lovers it has an evocative and effective score as well.Seek this one out and wonder if there was another Witchfinder General of more recent times who exorcised the British of the ability to make good,universally appealing movies.


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