Very Good Look Back on the Film That Killed Hammer
To the Devil...The Death of Hammer (2002)
*** 1/2 (out of 4)
This 24-minute documentary by David Gregory is about the making of Hammer's TO THE DEVIL A DAUGHTER, which would turn out to be the studios final film (until here recently). We learn from Christopher Lee that he's the one who originally brought the book to the studio but we then learn that to properly film the book they would need at least ten-million so they decided to try and do something different with the screenplay. While Lee agreed the screenplay was good he adds that it wasn't really the book. From this point on it seems everything went wrong with the production. We learn that Klaus Kinski was originally going to be in the film but he couldn't promise the director that he'd stay off drugs for ten days. We learn that his daughter ended up getting a part in the film because the director had seen her in an underground movie. The biggest shock comes from the fact that it seems everyone hated Richard Widmark and wish he had fallen off the face of the Earth. I love Widmark as an actor so hearing all these negative stories was somewhat of a shock but at the same time he seems like the tough guy that wouldn't be too happy with not having a script to work with and not liking how Hammer was making the film. The controversy surrounding the ending that was forced on them is discussed and by the end of the documentary it really does seem that very few were happy with the final product. I personally found the film itself to be quite bad but this documentary is honest and explains why it turned out that way. This is certainly a must-see for fans of the film or just film fans in general because it gives you the perfect idea of what can go wrong on a set.
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