6.5/10
1,246
18 user 8 critic

Brimstone & Treacle (1982)

A strange young man has a sinister effect on the family of a middle-aged writer.

Director:

Richard Loncraine

Writers:

Dennis Potter (play), Dennis Potter (screenplay)
Reviews

On Disc

at Amazon

1 win & 2 nominations. See more awards »

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Brimstone and Treacle (TV Movie 1987)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

The Bates sadly care for their severely disabled daughter Pattie. Martin arrives at their door claiming to be her college friend. He charms them into accepting him as a lodger and carer for Pattie. But Martin is not all he seems.

Director: Barry Davis
Stars: Denholm Elliott, Michael Kitchen, Patricia Lawrence
El Norte (1983)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

Peasants escaping mindless labor and a murderous Guatemalan government head to America in hopes for something better.

Director: Gregory Nava
Stars: Zaide Silvia Gutiérrez, David Villalpando, Ernesto Gómez Cruz
Pretty Poison (1968)
Comedy | Crime | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

When a mentally disturbed young man tells a pretty girl that he's a secret agent, she believes him, and murder and mayhem ensue.

Director: Noel Black
Stars: Anthony Perkins, Tuesday Weld, Beverly Garland
Drama | Crime | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

A timid bank teller anticipates a bank robbery and steals the money himself before the crook arrives. When the sadistic crook realizes he's been fooled, he tracks down the teller and engages him in a cat-and-mouse chase for the cash.

Director: Daryl Duke
Stars: Elliott Gould, Christopher Plummer, Susannah York
Adventure | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

A government researcher, sent to research the "menace" of wolves in the north, learns about the true beneficial and positive nature of the species.

Director: Carroll Ballard
Stars: Charles Martin Smith, Brian Dennehy, Zachary Ittimangnaq
Shampoo (1975)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

Lovers undo a hairdresser from Beverly Hills around Election Eve in 1968.

Director: Hal Ashby
Stars: Warren Beatty, Julie Christie, Goldie Hawn
Reds (1981)
Biography | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

A radical American journalist becomes involved with the Communist revolution in Russia, and hopes to bring its spirit and idealism to the United States.

Director: Warren Beatty
Stars: Warren Beatty, Diane Keaton, Edward Herrmann
Crime | Horror | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

A New York detective investigates a series of murders committed by random New Yorkers who claim that "God told them to."

Director: Larry Cohen
Stars: Tony Lo Bianco, Deborah Raffin, Sandy Dennis
Last Night I (1998)
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

A group of very different individuals with different ideas of how to face the end come together as the world is expected to end in six hours at the turn of the century.

Director: Don McKellar
Stars: Don McKellar, Sandra Oh, Roberta Maxwell
White Dog (1982)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

A trainer attempts to retrain a vicious dog that's been raised to attack black people.

Director: Samuel Fuller
Stars: Kristy McNichol, Christa Lang, Vernon Weddle
Demon Seed (1977)
Horror | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

A scientist creates Proteus--an organic super computer with artificial intelligence which becomes obsessed with human beings, and in particular the creators wife.

Director: Donald Cammell
Stars: Julie Christie, Fritz Weaver, Gerrit Graham
Ms .45 (1981)
Crime | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

A timid and mute seamstress goes insane after being attacked and raped twice in one day, in which she takes to the streets of New York City after dark and randomly shoots men with a .45 caliber pistol.

Director: Abel Ferrara
Stars: Zoë Lund, Bogey, Albert Sinkys
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
Sting ... Martin Taylor
Denholm Elliott ... Tom Bates
Joan Plowright ... Norma Bates
Suzanna Hamilton Suzanna Hamilton ... Patricia Bates
Benjamin Whitrow ... Businessman
Dudley Sutton ... Stroller
Mary MacLeod Mary MacLeod ... Valerie Holdsworth
Tim Preece Tim Preece ... Clergyman
Elizabeth Bradley Elizabeth Bradley ... Woman Passer By
Hugh Walters Hugh Walters ... Man
Christopher Fairbanks Christopher Fairbanks ... Drunk
Edit

Storyline

Brimstone and Treacle is a modern gothic tale about the evil that men do and the price that must be paid to make things right. The film, a remake of a 1976 teleplay that included Denholm Elliot in its original cast as Mr. Bates, the film also included an incredibly cool soundtrack of songs by artists like The Go-Go's, The Police, Squeeze and an irreverently stylish 1930's little diddy called "Spread A Little Happiness", performed by Sting by himself. Written by Gerry Kissell <repdetect@yahoo.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

daughter | guilt | remake | invalid | sex | See All (27) »

Taglines:

An intriguing fantasy of angelic innocence and devilish passion.

Genres:

Drama | Thriller

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

12 November 1982 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Brimstone See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

One of two movies theatrically released in 1982 that were directed by Richard Loncraine. The other was The Missionary (1982). See more »

Quotes

Tom Bates: You could be the Devil himself.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Opening credits are listed on the pages of a book floating on moving water. See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Passion: Films, Faith & Fury (2006) See more »

Soundtracks

Brimstone 2
Written and performed by Sting
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Cult Movies 33
4 January 1999 | by TYLERdurden74See all my reviews

33. BRIMSTONE AND TREACLE (thriller-drama, 1982) Martin (Sting) befriends middle-aged bookkeeper Tom (Denholm Elliott). Martin cons his way into his house by passing himself as friend to his daughter. Daughter Patricia has been left a mute and bedridden for 3 years after a mysterious car accident. Though Tom is suspicious of Martin's exact motives, his wife is beguiled by Martin's charm. But what they don't know is that Martin is sexually abusing their defenseless and disabled daughter.

Critique: Part fairy tale, part religious parable, this creepy, atmospheric film is highlighted by a wickedly perverse turn by Sting (lead singer of rock group 'The Police'). What makes his character such a bizarre figure is that his motives are unknown, his appetites unresolved.

I think Martin is just a thief, passing himself as anyone's friend just to have a place to stay. A sort of pickpocket. He's also a sexual deviant who doesn't mind how he gets it, either from an invalid or an old woman. The film portrays him as an avenging angel-type, brought into this deeply secular home as a purger of sins.

Interesting direction by Richard Loncraine (is this his film debut?) who works from a play adapted by Dennis Potter, whose own sexually dubious works are to be questioned.

'The Police', along with 'The Go-Gos' provided the 'hip' soundtrack.


5 of 9 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 18 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Stream Trending Movies With Prime Video

Enjoy a night in with these popular movies available to stream now with Prime Video.

Start your free trial



Recently Viewed