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Brimstone & Treacle (1982)

R  |   |  Drama, Thriller  |  12 November 1982 (USA)
6.5
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Ratings: 6.5/10 from 1,106 users  
Reviews: 19 user | 8 critic

A strange young man has a sinister effect on the family of a middle-aged writer.

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Title: Brimstone & Treacle (1982)

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
...
...
...
Businessman
Dudley Sutton ...
Stroller
Mary MacLeod ...
Valerie Holdsworth
Tim Preece ...
Clergyman
Elizabeth Bradley ...
Woman Passer By
Hugh Walters ...
Man
...
Drunk
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Storyline

Brimstone and Treacle is a modern gothic tale about the evil that men do and the price that must be paid to make things right. The film, a remake of a 1976 teleplay that included Denholm Elliot in its original cast as Mr. Bates, the film also included an incredibly cool soundtrack of songs by artists like The Go-Go's, The Police, Squeeze and an irreverently stylish 1930's little diddy called "Spread A Little Happiness", performed by Sting by himself. Written by Gerry Kissell <repdetect@yahoo.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

daughter | guilt | remake | invalid | sex | See All (27) »

Taglines:

An intriguing fantasy of angelic innocence and devilish passion.

Genres:

Drama | Thriller

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

12 November 1982 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Brimstone  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The project had been in development for some years with names such as David Bowie and even Michael Palin considered for the role of Martin. According to Sting he was eventually offered the part ahead of Malcolm McDowell after convincing director Richard Loncraine during an early morning meeting in New York. See more »

Quotes

Tom Bates: Miss Holdsworth, raise your skirt please.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Opening credits are listed on the pages of a book floating on moving water. See more »

Connections

References A Kind of Loving (1962) See more »

Soundtracks

Brimstone & Treacle
Written and performed by Sting
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Cult Movies 33
4 January 1999 | by (Australia) – See all my reviews

33. BRIMSTONE AND TREACLE (thriller-drama, 1982) Martin (Sting) befriends middle-aged bookkeeper Tom (Denholm Elliott). Martin cons his way into his house by passing himself as friend to his daughter. Daughter Patricia has been left a mute and bedridden for 3 years after a mysterious car accident. Though Tom is suspicious of Martin's exact motives, his wife is beguiled by Martin's charm. But what they don't know is that Martin is sexually abusing their defenseless and disabled daughter.

Critique: Part fairy tale, part religious parable, this creepy, atmospheric film is highlighted by a wickedly perverse turn by Sting (lead singer of rock group 'The Police'). What makes his character such a bizarre figure is that his motives are unknown, his appetites unresolved.

I think Martin is just a thief, passing himself as anyone's friend just to have a place to stay. A sort of pickpocket. He's also a sexual deviant who doesn't mind how he gets it, either from an invalid or an old woman. The film portrays him as an avenging angel-type, brought into this deeply secular home as a purger of sins.

Interesting direction by Richard Loncraine (is this his film debut?) who works from a play adapted by Dennis Potter, whose own sexually dubious works are to be questioned.

'The Police', along with 'The Go-Gos' provided the 'hip' soundtrack.


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