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Brimstone & Treacle (1982)

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



(play), (screenplay)

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1 win & 2 nominations. See more awards »


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Complete credited cast:
Suzanna Hamilton ...
Dudley Sutton ...
Mary MacLeod ...
Valerie Holdsworth
Tim Preece ...
Elizabeth Bradley ...
Woman Passer By
Hugh Walters ...
Christopher Fairbanks ...


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) »


An intriguing fantasy of angelic innocence and devilish passion.


Drama | Thriller


R | See all certifications »




Release Date:

12 November 1982 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Brimstone  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
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Did You Know?


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 »


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 »


Remake of Brimstone and Treacle (1987) See more »


Only You
Written and performed by Sting
See more »

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User Reviews

worth watching,forget the musical element
23 May 2006 | by (London) – See all my reviews

Dennis Potter never made a drama that never had a point,its just that his work was so deep the point of his dramas wasn't always obvious,in fact you felt you needed a high IQ level to get your head around his work.The important message of this film is that we shouldn't always be so trusting towards strangers,especially ones who seem so angelic they may have ulterior motives and in this case he did.How many cases have there been where the mentally handicapped have been abused by their carers,its not that often but its enough.Plus cases of the elderly go into nursing homes and end up being shoved about,i think he was making a very strong point.Stings character was a wolf in sheep's clothing,i think in the original version he was played by Micheal Kitchen,who i feel played the part better,the original version has only been on TV once as it had been banned,and may still be.The original version does put the point across better,i feel the remake lacks this, probably because Sting whose much more well known as a singer wasn't a good choice,it just made the film seem bizarre,people went to see this film purely to see what his acting was going to be like,so the point of the story sort of got lost.Dennis Potter was quiet ingenious, he never made a controversial film for the sake of being controversial,there was much more to him than that.Although i must admit its a pretty disturbing film,not one you would easily forget.

3 of 7 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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