Approx advert and trailer run time: 25 mins
Film run time: 1hr 31m
‘It’s in the trees! It’s coming!’
An adaptation of MR James’ Satanic cult story ‘Casting the Runes’ by Charles Bennett, and directed by Jacques Tourneur, the maestro of RKO’s atmospheric chillers like I Walked with A Zombie and Cat People, Night of the Demon has been dubbed a ‘British occult classic’ by the BFI.
Tourneur’s film is a part-realistic Gothic and part-shadowy Noir film about modern-day witchcraft in England. American psychologist and sceptic, John Holden (Dana Andrews) is handed a bewitched piece of parchment by affable but creepy occultist Dr. Karswell (Niall MacGinnis), while researching in the British Museum. The curse declares that he will die at the hands of a demon in just four days, what follows is a race against time to convince the conceited scientist that the curse is true.
Shot in various locales around Hertfordshire (Brocket Hall and Bricket Wood station), the film also inspired Kate Bush’s epic hit ‘Hounds of Love’ which samples its opening directly from the film.
This screening will include a short intro and post-screening discussion with Horror film academic Dr Darren Elliott-Smith (University of Hertfordshire).