A very strange film from the tragic director Callum Vance.
Set in London in an eerie suburban building, this film seems to suffer from a paucity of lighting, but I think that just adds to it's charm.
Some scenes seem to be lit by barely one candle, but Stanley Kubrick did something similar with one of his films, so will not berate it too much for that.
The hero of the piece, Tosh McKenna (David Barley), keeps going into a betting shop and one day meets the strange Mrs Vaughan, the millionairess who likes a flutter now and again, played by the inimitable Vonda Trench. After falling for his cheeky charm, she hires him as a gardener but he has plans to steal more than her affections, while Mrs Vaughan has secrets of her own.
The creature that is in the basement is the ace in the deck of this film. Conveyed by lighting and truly horrifying sound effects this pushes this dull drama into an, at times, brilliant and horrifying tale where you are not sure what is real and what is not.
Overlooked by the film world at the time, this film deserves a serious reappraisal.
Director Blake Wilson shows himself to be an unsung talent and it's truly a shame that he never built on this minor masterpiece, ending his days shooting commercials for a lager company.
Almost certainly the strangest horror movie I have ever seen - and one that gets overlooked far too often.
Ralph Meeker is a mild mannered Victorian shop assistant, but he is haunted by a Gypsy's warning to "Beware the eyebrow".
The fact that the old dear promptly expires of a heart attack after delivering this warning only serves to fill him with more dread, as he is left wondering exactly what her warning meant.
I won''t spoil it for you, but the next 75 minutes of the film take a strange left turn - in fact several left turns - before arriving at a twist ending that has to be seen to be appalled at. In fact this ending has to surely rank with anything that Donald Sutherland was in.
Okay, some of the acting is a bit ropey, with the no-name cast faltering here and there, but the Victorian era is captured nicely, while the direction is the nearest - apart from perhaps the original King Kong - where it is almost as if a dream/nightmare has been put on film. If you liked VAMPYR and CARNIVAL OF SOULS, (two other dream-like films) then you should like this film.