Dennis Price was originally cast as Lord Wessex but withdrew at the last moment (he was replaced by Leo Genn). Some film posters and advertising material from the time credit Price as appearing in the movie. See more »
Lord George Jeffreys:
You are all condemned, for crimes against king and kingdom, to hang... to dangle until you are but dead, to be then cut down still alive, to have your entrails drawn out and thrust into your own mouths, to be further hanged, then quartered like the carcasses of beef you are. You number five hundred, but even if you were five thousand, the execution of this sentence would be just before God Almighty... and may He have mercy upon your souls.
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This film is an unique thing. Being possibly the best of B-category Franco's movies, this one is very hard to find in Russia. And I guess only Franco's true fans and the lovers of the costume movies (like me)really have any reason to search for it.
Nevertheless, this film could be worse if not Christopher Lee. The man destined to play fantastic villains all his life now was playing a real historic villain (was the real Judge Jeffreys a villain? I think not but Jess Franco used another version). But Lee was ready to play in a HISTORIC movie, and instead of it he was to perform a horror show. Although his performance in this role was a very good one, he was disappointed and detested and told later he doesn't want any credits for this film.
There are some very rough mistakes (or special changes) in the movie: 1) The date is missed. The year 1685 was the real time of Monmouth rebellion, but the events destroying James II' and Jeffreys' power, has happened only 4 years later, in 1688-89, and called "Glorious Revolution". 2) Sir George Jeffreys really has died in the Tower of London - but of stone, not of a heart-attack as it's shown. 3) Jeffreys, how good or bad he was, has never been neither womanizer nor witch-hunter. Moreover he did all he could to prevent death sentences to alleged witches. And there was nothing to suggest that he had a mistress or used the arrested women for his lust. It is nothing but a profanation. 4) There were NO witch hunt in later 1680's in England. Even the few who was charged were mostly acquitted. The horrible things shown in film as Ketch's work were used normally in Scotland, not England.
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