Dead of Night (1972– )
7.9/10
77
4 user 4 critic

The Exorcism 

Four friends gather for Christmas dinner at an old cottage. Suddenly, there's a power failure and the phone goes dead. Then their wine turns to blood and the turkey makes them violently ill. Then things really get strange!

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Episode complete credited cast:
Anna Cropper ...
Rachel
Sylvia Kay ...
Margaret
Edward Petherbridge ...
Edmund
...
Dan
Kenneth Kendall ...
Newsreader
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Four friends gather for Christmas dinner at an old cottage. Suddenly, there's a power failure and the phone goes dead. Then their wine turns to blood and the turkey makes them violently ill. Then things really get strange!

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Horror

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5 November 1972 (UK)  »

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User Reviews

 
Dead Of Night: THE EXORCISM {TV} (Don Taylor, 1972) **1/2
12 October 2013 | by (Naxxar, Malta) – See all my reviews

This was the first episode of an obscure, short-lived British horror TV series. Despite the title, there is no exorcism involved – since the possession emerges as only a device by which the back-story to the strange events occurring during one Christmas supper is recounted. The preliminary stages are rather humdrum, but once the sense of dread makes itself felt, the film becomes a gripping and quite chilling experience. All the power in the central cottage goes out; a woman is compelled to play a tune she was unfamiliar with, then sees the skeleton of a child on a bed and, finally, serves as the vessel through which the spirit speaks; her husband's wine tastes like blood; and all four of the protagonists feel ill after eating a piece of turkey. Eventually, they discover the corpses of a woman and her two children, dead some two hundred years previously…and ultimately realize that they had been chosen to duplicate their martyrdom so as to placate the social injustice that went unpunished back in the day! The film ends with the Police investigating the scene the next morning, and a TV news bulletin reporting the weird incident of a gathering that had starved to death in spite of the fact that their dining-table was amply replenished with tasty food! Incidentally, director Taylor is not to be confused with the Hollywood actor-turned-director, nor leading man Edward Petherbridge with the lookalike but younger and better-known actor Anthony Higgins!


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