John George Haigh, the notorious "acid bath murderer" in 1940s England, becomes the subject of this dramatization.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Gillian Rogers
...
Archie Henderson
...
Rowena Cooper ...
Mrs. Durand-Deacon
John Flanagan ...
Arnold Burtin
...
DS Heslin
Matyelok Gibbs ...
Mrs Constance Lane
Barbara Marten ...
Emily Haigh
...
John Haigh Senior
Christopher Town ...
Neil McKinven ...
Donald McSwan
Claire Nielson ...
Amy McSwan
...
William McSwan
Christopher Ettridge ...
Steven Rogers (as Chris Ettridge)
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Storyline

Dramatisation of the true story of the notorious "acid bath murderer" John Haigh, who murdered women and disposed of their bodies in vats of acid in the 1940's. He was only caught when the gallstones of one of his victims, Mrs Durand-Deacon, failed to dissolve in the acid and were detected by the pathologist who examined the residue from the acid bath. Written by van_whistler@hotmail.com

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9 September 2002 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Crimes Quase Perfeitos  »

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Did You Know?

Goofs

In 1945, the widow Olive Durand-Deacon describes her husband as having served in "The Glorious Glosters". Although a common nickname for the Gloucestershire Regiment, it derives from their heroism at the battle of the Imjin River during the Korean War - in 1951. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Psychoville: Joy (2009) See more »

Soundtracks

When the Lights Go On Again
(uncredited)
Performed by Vera Lynn
[detectives inspecting the first crime scene]
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User Reviews

 
An excellent and chilling portrayal of the banality of evil
10 September 2002 | by (London, England) – See all my reviews

The film traces the life and deeds of a true life serial killer, John George Haig AKA the Acid Bath Murderer. Whilst in jail for fraud in the thirties he accidentally discovers the effect that acid has on animal bodies. He subsequently "offs" a series of people including a couple a family and three strangers by inviting them to his "workshop". He dissolves the bodies in oil drums full of acid. The film cuts to flashbacks of his upbringing by zealously religious parents, but steers clear of obviously blaming the parents for the son's murderous behaviour.

The film has a similar attention to detail as "10 Rillington Place" and Martin Clunes is excellently creepy as the charming Mr Haig. The contrast is small between Haig's day-to-day behaviour and the actual murders and disposals of the body but fascinating, leading to comparisons with Richard Attenborough's portrayal of Christie in 10 Rillington Place, but this film is more darkly humorous.

The film is written by Taggart creator Glenn Chandler and directed by Harry Bradbeer who directed most of the excellent BBC series "The Cops".


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