IMDb > Witchfinder General (1968)
Witchfinder General
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Witchfinder General (1968) More at IMDbPro »

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Overview

User Rating:
6.9/10   5,312 votes »
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Down 3% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Director:
Writers:
Tom Baker (screenplay) and
Michael Reeves (screenplay) ...
(more)
Contact:
View company contact information for Witchfinder General on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
May 1968 (UK) See more »
Genre:
Tagline:
The Year's Most Violent Film! [UK Theatrical] See more »
Plot:
A young soldier seeks to put an end to the evils caused by a vicious witch hunter. Full summary » | Full synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
Awards:
1 nomination See more »
NewsDesk:
(166 articles)
Blu-ray Review – Mark of the Devil (1970)
 (From Flickeringmyth. 29 September 2014, 1:55 AM, PDT)

‘Mark of the Devil’ Blu-ray Review (Arrow Video)
 (From Blogomatic3000. 24 September 2014, 1:42 AM, PDT)

Witchfinder General
 (From Trailers from Hell. 12 September 2014, 6:35 PM, PDT)

User Reviews:
Probably not as gruesome as the real thing, but gruesome enough. See more (122 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Vincent Price ... Matthew Hopkins

Ian Ogilvy ... Richard Marshall
Rupert Davies ... John Lowes
Hilary Heath ... Sara (as Hilary Dwyer)
Robert Russell ... John Stearne
Nicky Henson ... Swallow
Tony Selby ... Salter

Bernard Kay ... 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
Hira Talfrey ... Hanged Woman
Anne Tirard ... Old Woman (as Ann Tirard)
Peter Thomas ... Farrier
Edward Palmer ... Shepherd
David Webb ... Jailer
Lee Peters ... Sergeant
David Lyell ... Footsoldier
Alf Joint ... Sentry
Martin Terry ... Hoxne Innkeeper
Jack Lynn ... Brandeston Innkeeper
Beaufoy Milton ... Priest
Dennis Thorne ... Villager
Michael Segal ... Villager
Toby Lennon ... Old Man

Margaret Nolan ... Girl at Inn (as Maggie Nolan in closing credits)
Sally Douglas ... Girl at Inn
Donna Reading ... Girl at Inn
Patrick Wymark ... Cromwell
Wilfrid Brambell ... Master Loach (as Wilfred Brambell)
Gillian Aldam ... Young Woman in Cell (as Gillian Aldham)
Philip Waddilove ... Soldier
Derek Ware ... Boy at Hoxne Inn
John Kidd ... Magistrate
Susi Field ... Girl at Inn
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
David Reynolds-Lacey ... Unconcious Drunk in Tavern (uncredited)

Directed by
Michael Reeves 
 
Writing credits
Tom Baker (screenplay) and
Michael Reeves (screenplay)

Louis M. Heyward (additional scenes)

Ronald Bassett (novel)

Edgar Allan Poe  poem "The Conqueror Worm" (uncredited)

Produced by
Louis M. Heyward .... producer
Arnold L. Miller .... producer (as Arnold Miller)
Tony Tenser .... executive producer
Philip Waddilove .... producer
Samuel Z. Arkoff .... executive producer (uncredited)
 
Original Music by
Paul Ferris 
 
Cinematography by
John Coquillon (photographed by)
 
Film Editing by
Howard Lanning 
 
Casting by
Freddie Vale 
 
Art Direction by
Jim Morahan 
 
Makeup Department
Dorrie Hamilton .... makeup artist (as Dore Hamilton)
Henry Montsash .... hairdresser
 
Production Management
Ricky Coward .... production manager
 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Ian Goddard .... assistant director
Iain Lawrence .... assistant director
 
Art Department
Dennis Cantell .... construction manager
Sid Davies .... props
Freddie Harrison .... props (as Fred Harrison)
Jimmy James .... set dresser
Peter Sheilds .... assistant art director (as Peter Shields)
Andrew Low .... set dresser (uncredited)
 
Sound Department
Dennis Lanning .... dubbing editor
Paul Le Mare .... sound recordist
Hugh Strain .... sound mixer
Helena Lanning .... foley artist (uncredited)
 
Special Effects by
Roger Dicken .... special effects
 
Camera and Electrical Department
Gerry Anstiss .... camera operator (as Gerry Anstice)
Tony Breeze .... camera assistant
Jack Dooley .... stills
Brian Elvin .... camera operator
Chris Reynolds .... camera assistant
Laurie Shane .... gaffer
Freddie Williams .... grip
 
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Jill Thompson .... wardrobe (as Jill Thomson)
 
Editorial Department
Marion Curren .... assistant editor
 
Music Department
Paul Ferris .... conductor
Kendall Schmidt .... composer: US video release
Kenneth V. Jones .... composer: additional music (uncredited)
 
Other crew
Jack Daw .... publicist
Pat O'Donnell .... production secretary
Ewan Pearson .... location manager (as Euan Pearson)
Lorna Selwyn .... continuity
 
Crew believed to be complete


Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
"Conqueror Worm" - USA (alternative title)
"Matthew Hopkins: Conqueror Worm" - USA (alternative title)
See more »
Runtime:
86 min
Country:
Language:
Color:
Aspect Ratio:
1.85 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Certification:
Australia:R | Finland:K-18 (self applied) (2002) | Finland:(Banned) (1972) | Germany:16 (cut version) | Ireland:18 | Netherlands:16 (DVD rating) | Netherlands:18 (1970) | New Zealand:R18 | Norway:16 (1968) | Sweden:15 | UK:X (original rating) (passed with cuts) | UK:15 (tv rating) | UK:15 (re-rating: uncut) (2013) | UK:15 (video re-rating) (2007) | UK:18 (video rating) (1987) (1990) (1991) (1995) (2000) (2002) (2003) | USA:Unrated | West Germany:18

Did You Know?

Trivia:
A completely new score was written for the US video release by Kendall Schmidt.See more »
Goofs:
Crew or equipment visible: Camera shadow on the back of the one of the villagers on the bridge just before the accused witches are lowered in the moat.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 »
Movie Connections:

FAQ

What are the differences between the Director's Cut and the Extended Cut?
See more »
45 out of 50 people found the following review useful.
Probably not as gruesome as the real thing, but gruesome enough., 27 October 2002
Author: Troy Ros (Rastacat1@hotmail.com) from Northfield, MN

Matthew Hopkins was a self proclaimed Witchfinder who started his career in 1644 in Essex, England. In a three year career he is estimated to have killed between 200 and 400 "witches". The Witchfinder General (The Conqueror Worm) is a movie based on his success as a prosecutor of witches.

Witchfinder General is an interesting movie in that it is part horror, part melodrama, part historical epic. Vincent Price has one of his finest and most effective roles ever as Matthew Hopkins in this 1968 British Classic. The movie was renamed The Conqueror Worm for U.S. audiences to try and take advantage of Price's fame from Roger Corman's Edgar Allen Poe inspired series of movies. Except for reading part of the poem The Conqueror Worm during the ending credits, the movie has nothing to do with Poe.

The basic story is common enough for this sub-genre of horror movies: There is an abusive official who accuses and prosecutes alleged witches for his own personal gain and personal power trips. There are two other fine British films from this time period that deal with the same subject matter, The Devils by Kurt Russell and Mark of the Devil starring Herbert Lom. All three are well made and effective, but Witchfinder General is the darkest of the bunch. The tortures are all brutal and unnerving to watch and there is a lot of screaming in this movie. Price plays Hopkins as overbearing and cold bloodedly cruel. He allows a woman to submit to him sexually to prevent someone from being killed, then tortures and murders the guy anyway, and then later has her tortured and murdered for being a witch. What a guy!

The director of this movie was the young and upcoming Michael Reeves who unfortunately committed suicide in 1969, not long after this movie was released. There was a well known feud of sorts between Reeves and the star, Vincent Price. At one point Price is reputed to have said to the 25 year old director: "I have made over 70 films, what have you done?" with a reply from Reeves: "I have made three good ones". Perhaps the tension between director and star helped to make this the dark and humorless film that it is. Even 34 years after it's release, it still holds up as a beautifully made movie that hardly looks of feels dated at all. The period movies that Price was making with Roger Corman a few years before this film was made, while still excellent in many respects, are obviously a product of the 60's.

Unfortunately this movie has not been released in the U.S. on dvd. There is a British release that includes a documentary on Michael Reeves, but for now in America all we have is the MGM midnight movie video release. This film also appears on AMC now and again, and in fact, I just watched it on that channel yesterday.

Was the above review useful to you?
See more (122 total) »

Message Boards

Discuss this movie with other users on IMDb message board for Witchfinder General (1968)
Recent Posts (updated daily)User
Saw it for the first time yesterday... sofialoren
Matt Hopkins - Hero or Villain? conradthibault
Michael Reeves was a talented director, but wretched person. fleshrequiem
Does he carry... (spoiler, I suppose) ilssaridor
the slaying of hopkins runner_logan
Do you prefer the Witchfinder General or the Wicker Man? Chunky-Monkey
See more »

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