HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
Newest Reviews
Hellboy
Pond Life
Lego Movie 2: The Second Part, The
Third Wife, The
Shazam!
Follow Me
Leto
Fugitive Girls
Missing Link
Chant of Jimmie Blacksmith, The
Pet Sematary
Oh... Rosalinda!!
Dumbo
Kaleidoscope
Night Is Short, Walk On Girl
Knight of Shadows: Between Yin and Yang, The
Puppet Master: The Littlest Reich
Klute
Meow
Killer Crocodile
Nutcracker Prince, The
Secret World of Og, The
Benjamin
Fifth Cord, The
Man Could Get Killed, A
Cyborg 009: Kaiju War
Heavy Trip
Nightmare Weekend
Blue Ice
Great Scout & Cathouse Thursday, The
Incident, The
Hell's Angels
Heaven and Earth
Flatliners
Us
mid90s
Holiday
Lovin' Molly
Manhunt in the City
Click: The Calendar Girl Killer
   
 
Newest Articles
Trains and Training: The British Transport Films Collection Volume 13 on DVD
Holiday from Hell: In Bruges on Blu-ray
The Comedy Stylings of Kurt Russell: Used Cars and Captain Ron
Robot Rocked: The Avengers Cybernauts Trilogy on Blu-ray
Hammer's Bloodthirsty Bad Girls 1970: Lust for a Vampire and Countess Dracula
Hammer to Fall: Kiss Me Deadly on Blu-ray
Home of the Grave: The House That Dripped Blood and Asylum on Blu-ray
Wondrous Women: Supergirl vs Captain Marvel
Things Have Changed: Films You'd Be Insane to Make Now
The Hole in the Ground: Director Lee Cronin Interview
She's Missing: Director Alexandra McGuinness Interview
Woo's the Boss: Last Hurrah for Chivalry & Hand of Death on Blu-ray
Get Ahead in Showbiz: Expresso Bongo and It's All Happening
Outer Space and Outta Sight: Gonks Go Beat on Blu-ray
Tucked: The Derren Nesbitt Interview
   
 
  Curse of the Wraydons, The In One Bound Jack Was FreeBuy this film here.
Year: 1946
Director: Victor M. Gover
Stars: Tod Slaughter, Bruce Seaton, Henry Caine, Pearl Cameron, Andrew Laurence, Alan Lawrance, Lorraine Clewes, Gabriel Toyne, Ben Williams, John Coyle, Daphne Arthur, Barry O'Neill, Herbert Appleby, Lionel Gadsden, Joe Cunningham, Patricia Grant
Genre: Horror, Thriller, Historical, Adventure
Rating:  5 (from 1 vote)
Review: At the height of the Napoleonic Wars The United Kingdom was pitted against the might of France, but was managing to hold its own in spite of a number of treacherous Englishmen who, for a hefty fee, would conspire against their own country and assist the enemy. Important documents would be worth a lot of money to these scoundrels should they get their hands on them, as it is this evening when a British soldier sets off to deliver such letters and is set upon by the dreaded Chief (Tod Slaughter) in a rural lane. The man is choked to death and the villain makes off with his prize - is there nobody who can stop this terror and save the British Isles from falling victim to Napoleon's forces?

Yes, there is, and he's Spring Heeled Jack. Who, you may ask? Although he intermittently makes a return to the headlines it is a long time since the once-infamous troublemaker was frightening the populace of England by leaping about and clawing innocent parties, now relegated to one of those peculiar moral panics of yesteryear. It is unlikely his crimes were the fault of one person in particular as there were a number of people in the eighteen-hundreds and even before who made it their business to make a nuisance of themselves by scaring innocent citizens, often women walking home alone at night. They were not rapists, but violence was at times their goal, and the more word got around the more the craze spread.

Spring Heeled Jack had various stories told about him, ranging from him being an attacker with spring heeled boots to him being a full-on space alien (obviously that was added in hindsight around a hundred years later), but in this case he was made the hero. The Curse of the Wraydons was supposedly a famous Victorian play which was the stock in trade of Tod Slaughter, who had made his career reviving the barnstormers of many years before and transfixing his (mostly working class) audiences with his characters' lip-smacking evildoing, a real man you love to hate from a time when portraying an outright dastard was just as lucrative as portraying a hero or comic. Those days may be gone and the once-famous Slaughter near-forgotten, but he retains a following.

Needless to say Slaughter didn't play the hero this time either, as Jack was played by Bruce Seaton who alas we do not get to see showing off his powers of leaping very high aside from one scene when he jumps from a window, so no bouncing about here. Indeed, you may be asking yourself why bother to make the lead character Spring Heeled Jack at all: there's a sequence late on where his jumping could come in very handy to save his life and he doesn't even bother doing it, employing an alternative route to safety. Certainly there was no supernatural business to contend with in this case, although this is often labelled a horror movie, and there was a degree of grisliness, it was far more of a thriller dressed up in appropriate period garb.

What you will be wanting to see, or at least be advised to watch out for should you opt to give The Curse of the Wraydons a viewing, was Slaughter and his very individual characterisations. In truth, he was not a performer of great range, but that was mostly down to his fans wishing to see him do pretty much the same thing over and over again, rubbing his hands together with ill-disguised glee and gloating at his wickedness, often accompanied by a throaty chuckle. Really this example, one of his latter, was mainly interesting for its Spring Heeled Jack references as a window into a different era; not the nineteen-forties, but the nineteenth century as Slaughter made sure to stay as faithful to the text as possible. You may still get movies of classic Victorian novels being made - Charles Dickens never went out of style - but these now-obscure, once blockbusting theatricals did not make a comeback and nobody is interested in remedying that, they're simply too creaky for modern audiences. Which can be fun to track down in efforts such as this, to understand how they used to entertain.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 2073 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (2)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star do you think makes the best coffee?
Emma Stone
Anna Kendrick
Michelle Rodriguez
Sir Patrick Stewart
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Andrew Pragasam
  Rachel Franke
Paul Shrimpton
  Desbris M
Enoch Sneed
  Derrick Smith
Darren Jones
   

 

Last Updated: