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"Quatermass" (1979) More at IMDbPro »TV mini-series 1979-

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6.9/10   374 votes »
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Release Date:
24 October 1979 (UK) See more »
In the near future, civilisation has broken down to the barest fragment of recognisable life. Young... See more »
Plot Keywords:
(33 articles)
User Reviews:
The end of Quatermass, from the man who sets his scares on slow-burn See more (19 total) »


 (Series Cast Summary - 24 of 27)

John Mills ... Prof. Bernard Quatermass (4 episodes, 1979)

Simon MacCorkindale ... Joe Kapp (4 episodes, 1979)
Ralph Arliss ... Kickalong (4 episodes, 1979)
Paul Rosebury ... Caraway (4 episodes, 1979)
Jane Bertish ... Bee (4 episodes, 1979)
Rebecca Saire ... Hettie Carlson (3 episodes, 1979)

Toyah Willcox ... Sal (3 episodes, 1979)
Tony Sibbald ... Chuck Marshall (3 episodes, 1979)

Barbara Kellerman ... Clare Kapp (2 episodes, 1979)
Brewster Mason ... Gurov (2 episodes, 1979)

Margaret Tyzack ... Annie Morgan (2 episodes, 1979)
Bruce Purchase ... Tommy Roach (2 episodes, 1979)
Annabelle Lanyon ... Isabel (2 episodes, 1979)
David Yip ... Frank Chen (2 episodes, 1979)
Neil Stacy ... Toby Gough (2 episodes, 1979)

Brenda Fricker ... Alison Thorpe (2 episodes, 1979)
Elsie Randolph ... Woman Minister (2 episodes, 1979)
Larry Noble ... Jack (2 episodes, 1979)
Gretchen Franklin ... Edna (2 episodes, 1979)
James Ottaway ... Arthur (2 episodes, 1979)
Clare Ruane ... Jane (2 episodes, 1979)
Donald Eccles ... Chisholm (2 episodes, 1979)
Sophie Kind ... Kapp Child / ... (2 episodes, 1979)
Joanna Joseph ... Debbie, Kapp Child / ... (2 episodes, 1979)
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Series Directed by
Piers Haggard (4 episodes, 1979)
Series Writing credits
Nigel Kneale (4 episodes, 1979)

Series Produced by
Ted Childs .... producer (4 episodes, 1979)
Norton Knatchbull .... associate producer (4 episodes, 1979)
Verity Lambert .... executive producer (4 episodes, 1979)
Series Original Music by
Nic Rowley (4 episodes, 1979)
Marc Wilkinson (4 episodes, 1979)
Series Cinematography by
Ian Wilson (4 episodes, 1979)
Series Film Editing by
Keith Palmer (4 episodes, 1979)
Series Casting by
Michael Barnes (4 episodes, 1979)
Series Production Design by
Arnold Chapkis (4 episodes, 1979)
Series Art Direction by
Terry Parr (4 episodes, 1979)

Stuart Rose (unknown episodes)
Series Costume Design by
Michael Baldwin (4 episodes, 1979)
Series Makeup Department
Eddie Knight .... makeup artist (4 episodes, 1979)
Mary Sturgess .... hair stylist (4 episodes, 1979)
Series Production Management
Johnny Goodman .... executive in charge of production (4 episodes, 1979)
Laurie Greenwood .... production manager (4 episodes, 1979)
Series Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Steve Lanning .... second assistant director (4 episodes, 1979)
Bill Westley .... assistant director (4 episodes, 1979)

Christopher Newman .... third assistant director (unknown episodes)
Series Art Department
Bert Gardner .... property buyer (4 episodes, 1979)
Rex Hobbs .... property master (4 episodes, 1979)
Charlie Simmons .... construction coordinator (4 episodes, 1979)

Paul Purdy .... props (unknown episodes)
Series Sound Department
Chris Gurney .... boom operator (4 episodes, 1979)
Dudley Plummer .... sound mixer (4 episodes, 1979)
Ian Toynton .... sound editor (4 episodes, 1979)
Roger Wilson .... sound editor (4 episodes, 1979)
Hugh Strain .... sound mixer (3 episodes, 1979)
Series Visual Effects by
Martin Denning .... video playback (1 episode, 1979)
Series Camera and Electrical Department
Neil Binney .... camera operator (4 episodes, 1979)
Ray Hearne .... still photographer (4 episodes, 1979)
Alan Martin .... gaffer (4 episodes, 1979)
Tim Ross .... follow focus cameramen (4 episodes, 1979)
Series Costume and Wardrobe Department
David Murphy .... wardrobe (4 episodes, 1979)
Series Editorial Department
Chris Blunden .... first assistant editor (4 episodes, 1979)
Series Other crew
Linda Agran .... story editor (4 episodes, 1979)
Richard Clarke .... technical advisor (4 episodes, 1979)
Sally Croft .... publicist (4 episodes, 1979)
Tudor Davies .... choreographer (4 episodes, 1979)
Peter Harvey .... production accountant (4 episodes, 1979)
Sally Pardo .... production assistant (4 episodes, 1979)
Stephen Pushkin .... location manager (4 episodes, 1979)
Pat Rambaut .... continuity (4 episodes, 1979)

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Additional Details

Also Known As:
60 min (4 episodes) | USA:204 min (4 episodes)
Aspect Ratio:
1.33 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Filming Locations:

Did You Know?

Nigel Kneagle has said in interviews he based the character of Kickalong on Charles Manson.See more »
Movie Connections:
Featured in "Screenwipe: Episode #1.3" (2006)See more »


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25 out of 26 people found the following review useful.
The end of Quatermass, from the man who sets his scares on slow-burn, 3 March 2005
Author: Mappy the Mouse from Adelaide, Australia

You have to hand it to Nigel Kneale.... Even after all these years, his works still have the power to leave you feeling just a bit disturbed. Not in the out and out conventions of most horror/sci-fi titles, but with the underlying neuroses and paranoias that afflict all societies, regardless of culture.

All of the Quatermass serials contained these elements, so much so that they were practically strip-mined by The X Files. And so, regardless of the quaint anachronisms that they contain, they still, somehow, manage to retain something for the modern viewer.

The 1970's Quatermass series is the most anachronistic of all, because it is so unlike the earlier serials (produced in the 50's and 60's, as were the film versions of said series). This makes the aesthetic of the series so much more nihilistic. Made under the backdrop of the (then) rising punk scene, the random violence and criminal behaviour that is portrayed must have seemed entirely topical. Even the relative cheapness of the production adds to this aesthetic: so very 70's Brit sci-fi.

But the series was written back in the late 60's, originally intended to be the 4th film in the movie series (especially with the relative success of the "Quatermass and the Pit" film). This is why we have the strange interbreeding of hippy culture and guns....

As such, you have to say that Kneale was certainly visionary in that oh-so grim British way.... And the concept that human beings might be hardwired to seek out destructive (even genocidal) religious ideals (by unseen, advanced intelligences), capable of being intensified remotely for "harvesting" (for reasons unknown), certainly has a lot of resonance in today's world.

The acting in the series was variable (understandable for a TV series). John Mills is capable as the aging and (initially) confused Quatermass, desperately seeking his granddaughter in a world that seems to be falling apart. Once the threat is recognised, the scientist in him takes over, leading to a slow and tragic conclusion.

Simon McCorkindale, an actor who seemed to be on top of his game at this time, ably plays Quatermass's sidekick, Joe Kapp. Never the safest thing to be in any Quatermass serial, Kapp is taken through the emotional wringer in ways too horrible for a husband and father to bear, before facing the fate of sidekicks before him.

Bruce Purchase and David Yip provide temporary interest (never destined to be long-lived in a Quatermass serial).

On the flipside, Ralph Arliss is quite painful as the murderous (and annoying) Kickalong, whose fate is far too kind (and long in waiting). There is an earlier scene where a group of the planet people are massacred whilst walking between rival gangs having a shootout. Something like that would have been more appropriate for Kickalong, but it was, sadly, not to be....

The effects are of a pretty low standard, but given everything else, this doesn't really seem to matter. Given the cheap, 70's budget the producers had to work with (we certainly aren't looking at a Space: 1999 cashflow here), they managed to perform miracles.

I remember first watching this some time in the 80's (I'm not sure when precisely) on late-night TV. The darkly-nihilistic atmosphere of the series attracted me to it, then, because it was so different to other sci-fi shows going around. Years later I still find it strangely appealing, even with the faults of its age.

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Discuss this movie with other users on IMDb message board for "Quatermass" (1979)
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Quatermass Retrospective gareth-36
Why such a low rating? ngolian
Anyone record episode 4 from ITV4? duke-verity
Goodbye, Professor Quatermass.... phantomsteve
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