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Nothing But The Night [DVD] [1973]

3.5 out of 5 stars 31 customer reviews

Price: £8.12 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over £20. Details
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Product details

  • Actors: Christopher Lee, Peter Cushing, Diana Dors
  • Directors: Peter Sadsy
  • Format: PAL
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: 15
  • Studio: Strawberry Media
  • DVD Release Date: 7 May 2012
  • Run Time: 90 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (31 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B007AMRQPS
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 44,037 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Product Description

Product Description

1973 British Horror film, in which three trustees of the Van Traylen fund have died during the last few months, their deaths resembling suicides. But, after a mysterious bus accident involving the final three trustees and 30 orphan children, police colonel Bingham (Christopher Lee) starts investigating and notices discrepancies that make him question whether it was an accident. One of the orphans is treated by a psychiatrist, and when that doctor ends up murdered, it becomes obvious that something sinister is going on, and not just coincidental deaths. The dead psychiatrist's supervisor, Sir Ashley (Peter Cushing), agrees to help the police with the hopes of finding the truth behind the mysterious happenings.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD Verified Purchase
In 1972, Christopher Lee, increasingly frustrated with the glut of one-dimensional horror roles he was routinely offered, set about creating his own production company with the assistance of Hammer veteran Anthony Nelson Keys. Given the title Charlemagne Productions after Lee's famous ancestor, this new firm was supposed to provide him with some worthy starring vehicles, but due to the quicksand-like state of the British film industry in the 1970s, it was eventually responsible for just one movie, an adaptation of a little-known novel by John Blackburn entitled Nothing But the Night.
The plot sees Lee's bullish Colonel Bingham, a big cheese in MI5, or Scotland Yard's Special Branch, or something, investigating a series of inexplicable deaths linked to an offshore Scottish orphanage with the help of his friend, eminent pathologist Sir Mark Ashley (Peter Cushing). After a weird incident on a coach filled with the orphanage's children leaves the driver dead and one young girl (Gwyneth Strong, later Cassandra in Only Fools and Horses) with what appears to be amnesia, things begin to take a more sinister turn...
Admittedly, it appears that this modest horror-thriller had production difficulties from the very start; originally set to be helmed by Don Sharp (who worked with Lee on the likes of 1965's Rasputin, the Mad Monk), the directing duties were eventually assigned to Taste the Blood of Dracula's Peter Sasdy, but the talented Hungarian's efforts here do not match those on his well-regarded 1969 Lee / Hammer vampire sequel. The shoot, which involved much location work, was hampered by the fact that the tight budget didn't run to a second unit, whilst the filming schedule was beset with bad weather.
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9 Comments 38 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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It's a shame that this didn't do too well at the box office. It's what might have been for Cushing and Lee in their best pairing (storywise) of the seventies. The film sticks fairly closely to the exciting and innovative novel by the great John Blackburn. If this film had done better box office, we might have seen a screen version of 'Bury Him Darkly' another horror/sci-fi/ancient evil cocktail and the best of Blackburn's output. Now that there is only Hollywood knocking out films, best lost forever than have them ruin that. Peter Sasdy is the Director who must be drawn to 'ancient evil' mixed with sci-fi stories, because the previous year he directed Nigel Kneale's 'The Stone Tape' and a big screen version of 'Doomwatch'. Nothing But The Night has a flavour of the Wicker Man about it, without the futility and the isolation. There's a stalwart crew of British actors backing up the two main protagonists like Keith Barron, Fulton Mackay and completing the Kneale link, ex-Quatermass, John Robinson. If you like to see Cushing and Lee both playing the good guys for a change, this is the film for you.
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I was pleasantly surprised by this dvd having seen the film once years ago on TV. Yes it's a low budget 70s movie which you're only going to watch if you're a fan of Cushing and/or Lee, but compared to some of their other non-Hammer efforts it isn't bad.

The Scottish setting and centrality of children to the plot are reminiscent of The Wicker Man though that's film splendid ending is not matched here. The location shooting is good and adds to the atmosphere, but as so often with these movies the ideas slightly outstretch the budget and execution.

Tha cast is impressive - Michael Gambon ,Fulton Mackay,Keith Barron and Diana Dors.

All in all one for fans of 70s British horror and the two leading stars of the genre.
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Why was it that this film took so long to be released on DVD? It has all the ingredients of a classic, a good cast, and a Wickerish Scottish Island to boot.

The reason may be this: somehow this film doesn't make the grade. For the most part it plays out as a serious, modern whodunnit thriller, leading one to expect a satisfactory resolution to the mystery by the end of the film. As the film reaches its final half hour though, a suspicion grows that the plot is going to let the side down. And it does.

Silly hokum has an honoured place in British horror films, but it has to be used in the right film and in the right context. The ending offered here does not do justice to the performances and the production values on display. You don't watch a Bond film and expect to have the villain revealed to be a glove puppet, nor should you be expected to tolerate the similarly disappointing denouement foist upon you here. A missed opportunity.
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By A. W. Wilson TOP 500 REVIEWER on 9 April 2012
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Not seen for far too long (Why? And why isn't this released in the U/K Region 2?), This unpretentious horror/mystery/thriller works on most levels. Perhaps the ending is a bit much to take, but otherwise it's a good watch, with the usual professional perfs from Lee and Cushing, ably abetted by Dors, Keith Barron, and the much underused Georgia Brown. Gwyneth Strong makes a good debut and impresses as "Mary" a crucial role in an unusual plot. The print is good (1.78:1 Anamorphic it says), plus good colour and sound. You get the opportunity to watch the film with a surprisingly intersteing 5' intro from Katarina Leigh Walters...(It says she is "Former WWE DVIA (sic) and CURRENT TNA KNOCKOUT so that's allright then-she can intro any film for me, and the facts are good - Some of you will know about this film already, others, like me, found her remarks useful). I recomend this film and almost gave it 5 stars, but i'ts not quite that good. Price is good tho, so take a chance and if you have never seen it I don't think you will be disapointed.
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