Brimstone & Treacle (1982) - Plot Summary Poster


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  • 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.

  • Tom Bates is racked with guilt over causing his daughter, Patricia, to be an invalid (she accidentally ran into an oncoming truck after catching him and his secretary having sex), so he reluctantly invites a young man home to dinner whom he mistakenly believes is his daughter's old school friend. Mrs. Bates finds their visitor, Martin Taylor, quite charming and welcomes the change in the long and arduous work of taking care of their daughter, so she invites him to stay for a few days. Mr. Bates is quite leery of Martin, but in the interest of keeping peace with his wife and trying to keep his guilt in check, he agrees to let him stay. Martin slowly exploits the Bates' trust as he hatches an evil plot that will change all of their lives.

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


The synopsis below may give away important plot points.


  • Controversial Grand Prize winner of Montreal Film Festival. A taut, audacious thriller with a bite - and Sting ! Sting is stunning ! Subtle, colorful and reveting ! The film owes its mood of unverable eroticism to Sting, a gifted and charismatic actor ! As Martin Taylor, Sting is a strange sexy young man who worms his way into the lives of a middle-aged couple. Their attractive daugter Pattie ( Suzanna Hamilton ) has been paralyzed for four years, victim of a hit-and-run accident. Her father ( Denholm Elliott ) suspect young Taylor's of dark motives : her mother ( Joan Plowright ) is completely seduced by Taylor charm. With a sound track by Polic, Squeeze, The Go-Go's and Sting himself, Brimstone & Treacle is intriguing, sinister and something altogether different !

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