1973 Certificate: 15

Synopsis

Boasting perversion, paganism and one of the most chilling endings in movie history, Robin Hardy's bleak horror yarn is truly the stuff of nightmares. Sent to investigate the disappearance of a child on a remote Scottish island, god-fearing policeman Edward Woodward is met by a community that lives by decidedly un-Christian values. Faced with the likes of cross-dressing lord Christopher Lee and brazen temptress Britt Ekland, the poor copper struggles to follow his righteous path. But faith is no protection from fate...

Director

  • Robin Hardy

Cast

  • Edward Woodward

  • Christopher Lee

  • Britt Ekland

  • Diane Cilento

Review

Probably the best British horror film ever. Both erotic and mesmeric, Anthony Shaffer's screenplay and Robin Hardy's direction keep the story flowing right up to its chilling end.

Edward Woodward gives a powerful and unsettling performance as Sgt Howie, a puritanical Christian copper who travels from the Scottish mainland to Summerisle, a remote Western Isle to investigate an anonymous report of a missing girl.

But when he arrives, the whole island denies ever seeing the girl and during his investigations Howie discovers that the island, under the leadership of Lord Summerisle (Christopher Lee), practices Pagan worship. Full of eroticism (Britt Ekland bares all in a very sexy and silly dance), and haunting folk songs, the film builds in tension as the island's May Day celebrations come to a chilling head.

A cult classic, whose ending will stay with you long after the credits have rolled.