24 November 2014

Curse of the Demon (1957)
81 min.
Directed by Jacques Tourneur.
With Dana Andrews, Peggy Cummins, Niall MacGinnis, Maurice Denham, Athene Seyler, Liam Redmond.
One of the best horror films of the 1950's - and that's no small accolade!

A cynical psychologist Dr. John Holden (Andrews) is shaken when a professional colleague named Harrington dies under mysterious circumstances. Rumor has it Harrington got too close to a supposed warlock and practitioner of the black arts, a man named Julian Karswell (MacGinnis).

But Holden doesn't buy any such hocus pocus. Nevertheless, he begins to study witchcraft. Slowly, he's drawn into a supernatural web of evil...and it seems it's all controlled by the malevolent Karswell. Will Holden live to to breathe another day?

Very well made, and exceptionally paced, Curse of the Demon benefits from a strong, believable performance from sci fi regular Dana Andrews.

Initially, audiences weren't supposed to see the titular demon, but it was added in at the last minute at the insistence of the producer. Originally titled Night of the Demon with a running time of 96 minutes, it was released stateside as Curse of the Demon in an 81 minute truncated version.

Whichever the version, you'll find Curse of the Demon a classic.

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