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Curse of the Demon (1957)

Night of the Demon (original title)
Not Rated | | Fantasy, Horror, Mystery | July 1958 (USA)
American professor John Holden arrives in London for a parapsychology conference, only to find himself investigating the mysterious actions of Devil-worshiper Julian Karswell.

Director:

Jacques Tourneur

Writers:

Charles Bennett (screenplay), Hal E. Chester (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Dana Andrews ... John Holden
Peggy Cummins ... Joanna Harrington
Niall MacGinnis ... Doctor Julian Karswell
Maurice Denham ... Professor Henry Harrington
Athene Seyler ... Mrs. Karswell
Liam Redmond ... Mark O'Brien
Reginald Beckwith Reginald Beckwith ... Mr. Meek
Ewan Roberts ... Lloyd Williamson
Peter Elliott Peter Elliott ... Kumar
Rosamund Greenwood Rosamund Greenwood ... Mrs. Meek
Brian Wilde ... Rand Hobart
Richard Leech ... Inspector Mottram
Lloyd Lamble ... Detective Simmons
Peter Hobbes Peter Hobbes ... Superintendent
Charles Lloyd Pack Charles Lloyd Pack ... Chemist (as Charles Lloyd-Pack)
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Storyline

Dr. John Holden ventures to London to attend a paranormal psychology symposium with the intention to expose devil cult leader Julian Karswell. Holden is a skeptic and does not believe in Karswell's power. Nonetheless, he accepts an invitation to stay at Karswell's estate, along with Joanna Harrington, niece of Holden's confidant who was electrocuted in a bizarre automobile accident. Karswell secretly slips a parchment into Holden's papers that might possibly be a death curse. Recurring strange events finally strike fear into Holden, who believes that his only hope is to pass the parchment back to Karswell to break the demonic curse. Written by Rick Gregory <rag.apa@email.apa.org>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Horror! Most terrifying story the screen has ever told! See more »


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

July 1958 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Curse of the Demon See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (edited)

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Beginning in the 1980s, Columbia Pictures replaced their edited 83-minute U.S. version with the uncut original 95-minute version whilst retaining the U.S. title "Curse of the Demon." The various video releases, and pay-TV showings, have used this restored version. A DVD release contained both versions. See more »

Goofs

In the opening shot, when Professor Harrington asks to see Karswell, he demands "I must see Dr. Karswell at once". When Bates, the butler replies, he refers to Karswell as "Mister", and nowhere else in the movie is Karswell addressed as "doctor". One would assume that Harrington of all people, having headed an investigation into Karswell and his cult, would know his title. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Narrator: It has been written since the beginning of time, even unto these ancient stones, that evil supernatural creatures exist in a world of darkness. And it is also said man using the magic power of the ancient runic symbols can call forth these powers of darkness, the demons of Hell.
See more »

Alternate Versions

The original U.S. release version was edited down from the British version. Among the differences was a reduction in the opening airport scene (where Holden is asked questions by the reporters), the removal of Karswell telephoning Holden in his hotel room, a reduction in the scene at Lufford Hall (missing out completely the conversation between Karswell and his mother), and most significantly the entire removal of the scene where Holden visits the relations of Rand Hobart at their farm. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Last Action Hero (1993) See more »

Soundtracks

Plain Song
(uncredited)
Music by Fela Sowande
Chappell Recorded Music Library
See more »

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User Reviews

To demon or not to demon
29 October 2004 | by mcdamstenSee all my reviews

I thought I had heard awhile back that Jacques Tourneur didn't want to show the demon. Does anybody know if this is so? Having worked with Val Lewton, this would seem possible. If so, it's a shame Tourneur isn't around to put a director's cut on the DVD instead of Curse Of The Demon which is a little redundant being on the same DVD as Night Of The Demon. I found the demon scary when I was 12 years old and would not have enjoyed the film as much without it. Now, of course, the film would seem better without it. The atmosphere of Tourneur's work that I've seen; this,I Walked With A Zombie, Out Of The Past, and that Twighlight Zone episode (one of the best) of the elderly lady getting calls from her deceased husband consistently has that great nocturnal, shadowy and mysterious quality to it. This body of work alone is enough to make him one of my favorite directors. Even if this isn't one of Dana Andrews best performances, his stubborn skepticism is convincing enough to contrast nicely with Carswell's over politeness. As old horror movies go; this ranks up there with The (original) Haunting, Eyes Without A Face, Black Sunday and early Universals as the best among the old black and whites for me. Strangely enough, I happened to have watched it earlier this (yesterday now) evening October 28th which IS the night of the demon. Coincidence? **** out of *****


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