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To the Devil a Daughter (1976)

R  |   |  Horror  |  July 1976 (USA)
5.8
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Ratings: 5.8/10 from 2,253 users  
Reviews: 41 user | 63 critic

An American occult novelist battles to save the soul of a young girl from a group of Satanists, led by an excommunicated priest, who plan on using her as the representative of the Devil on Earth.

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(screenplay) (as Chris Wicking) , (adaptation), 2 more credits »
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Title: To the Devil a Daughter (1976)

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
Anna Fountain
...
Henry Beddows
...
George de Grass
...
Catherine Beddows
Eva Maria Meineke ...
Eveline de Grass
...
David Kennedy
Derek Francis ...
Bishop
Izabella Telezynska ...
Margaret (as Isabella Telezynska)
...
Kollde (as Constantin de Goguel)
Anna Bentinck ...
Isabel
Irene Prador ...
German Matron
Brian Wilde ...
Black Room Attendant
Petra Peters ...
Sister Helle
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Storyline

An excommunicated priest sets up a satanic cult that only looks Catholic on the outside. He convinces a man to sign over his daughter's soul so that she will become the devil's representative on earth on her eighteenth birthday, but as that day nears, the man seeks the help of an American occult novelist to save his daughter, both physically and spiritually. Written by Brian J. Wright <tyrannorabbit@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Warning! This Motion Picture Contains The Most Shocking Scenes This Side Of Hell! See more »

Genres:

Horror

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

|

Language:

Release Date:

July 1976 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Child of Satan  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Cliff Robertson was seriously considered for the role of John Verney. See more »

Goofs

When David burns alive, the stunt performer's head and hands are clearly covered with a greenish protection headpiece and gloves. See more »

Quotes

Father Michael Rayner: It is not heresy, and I will not recant!
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Adjust Your Tracking (2013) See more »

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User Reviews

 
This is NOT a third rate horror movie!
9 September 2003 | by (Los Angeles, California) – See all my reviews

This is not a film for the occult horror film aficionado. "To the Devil...a Daughter" has already received a few whithering reviews that are all justified. Dennis Wheatley, the author of the book, condemned it because there was little resemblance to his novel and what appears on screen, except for the title. Currently available on wide screen 16X9 anamorphic transfer, the DVD contains a 24 minute documentary with recent commentary by Peter Sykes, the director, and Roy Skeggs, the producer. "To the Devil...a Daughter" is a well done film that demonstrates what a first rate director is capable of with a limited budget. This film turns out to be the horror film equivalent of "Casablanca" because the movie as originally scripted was not filmable. Hence, with the start of production, the script was continually being written on a day to day basis by Gerald Vaughan-Hughes, an uncredited screen writer. "To the Devil...a Daughter" followed the genre setting "The Exorcist" and "Rosemary's Baby" and was the last Hammer film because it was too little and too late.

"To the Devil...a Daughter" is one of the earliest Nastassja Kinski films and must have been seen by Roman Polanski who realized her potential. It is not a chessey film, but does have a few pieces of cheese in it. The most obvious one is the full frontal nudity scene of a very young Nastassja. Yes, it is cheesey, but from an editing view, is more shocking than titillating. In her first scene, it is apparent that there is more than a passing resemblance between Nastassja and Ingrid Bergman - innocent, clean beauties. In one of the scenes, Nastassja was having a problem actually getting the tears that the director wanted and there had been quite a few retakes. Richard Widmark said to the director, "when I say turnover, turnover, it's going to happen." Sykes started the film rolling and Widmark hit her right "in the chops" and the tears came and he said, "OK, now act." The cast is first rate and included Richard Widmark (who was pretty disgusted with the film and threatened to walk out on it), Christopher Lee (of horror film fame), Honor Blackman a renown actress at the time in Britain (known to American audiences as Pussy Galore of the James Bond "Goldfinger," and Denholm Elliot as the German bad guy in "Raiders of the Lost Ark."

It is best to watch "To the Devil...a Daughter" with no expectations and let the film naturally unfold, without preconceived mental baggage. If one is steeped in the occult traditions, then this movie is not for you because of its glaring errors - all made up by the afore mentioned screen writer. Otherwise, the mood of the picture is quickly set by Richard Widmark's,

"98% of so called satanist are nothing but pathetic freaks who get their kicks out of dancing naked in freezing church yards and use the devil as an excuse for getting some sex, but then there is that other 2%, I'm not so sure about them."

Christopher Lee's role as the maniacal, ex-communicated priest brings to mind the great performance of Boris Karloff as Imhotep in the 1932 "The Mummy," who had the supernatural power to project thought over space and time. "To the Devil...a Daughter" is well paced with its race against time.


34 of 44 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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