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The Skull (1965)

Not Rated | | Horror, Thriller | 25 August 1965 (USA)
A collector comes into possession of the skull of the Marquis de Sade and learns it is possessed by an evil spirit.

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Writers:

(from the story "The Skull of the Marquis de Sade" by), (screenplay by)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
... Christopher Maitland
... Anthony Marco
Jill Bennett ... Jane Maitland
... Inspector Wilson
... Police Surgeon
... Bert Travers
... Auctioneer
... Dr. Londe
April Olrich ... French Girl
... Pierre, Phrenologist
... Maid
... Judge
Paul Stockman ... First Guard
Geoffrey Cheshire ... Second Guard
George Hilsdon ... Policeman
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Storyline

A collector of esoterica, Dr. Maitland, buys an unusual skull from his ordinary source of artifacts. The skull is what remains of marquis De Sade. Much too soon he discovers how the skull affects him: by turning him into a frenzied killer. Written by Mattias Thuresson

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

When the Skull strikes you'll Scream!

Genres:

Horror | Thriller

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

25 August 1965 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Caveira  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound Recording)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The heirs of Donatien Alphonse François de Sade pressed charges to prevent any use of his name on the advertising material. The changes on posters and lobby-cards were made at the very last minute by sticking the new title "Le Crâne Maléfique" (meaning "The Evil Skull") on top of the former, "Les forfaits du Marquis de Sade" (meaning "the Infamies of Marquis de Sade"). Only on that condition the film could finally be released in the French territory. See more »

Goofs

In the first minute, the gate to the graveyard is swinging wildly, but the trees and bushes all around are still. (One random twig is plying about...) The phrenologist shuts the gate firmly. In the next shot, the gate is still and ajar, but the trees and bushes are moving about as if 'blown'. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Pierre: What are you doing here?
French Girl: Aren't you pleased to see me?
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Inside the Tower (2015) See more »

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User Reviews

Colourful photography, excellent script - and a skull on wires
30 November 2008 | by See all my reviews

Peter Cushing and Christopher Lee working together again here, though for Amicus this time, not Hammer. Despite the good cast, "The Skull" looks like a low budget studio production, quickly shot - and with the "monster" being a skull flying on visible wires, this easily could have gone awry. But the movie works surprisingly well, first of all due to an excellent script based on a story by Robert Bloch ("Psycho"): Maitland (Cushing) shares an interest in the occult with Phillips (Lee) who warns him to get rid of a skull possessed by a demonic spirit. Of course Maitland doesn't listen and gets into trouble. Because the skull hasn't got any claws to catch victims, the terror has to be mostly psychological, and this is done brilliantly for example in the surreal dream sequence when Maitland believes a judge asks him for a Russian roulette. The extremely colorful photography of John Wilcox ("Legend of the 7 Golden Vampires") makes "The Skull" look really good - knowing that, they let the caretaker fall through coloured glass, not simply on the floor. In opposite to other horror films of the 1960s, "The Skull" still seems quite original, not a story you saw a dozen times before. Well worth watching.


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