Our Christopher Lee retrospective continues here on BMM, as we celebrate the great man’s career with a guide to all the many different times he glared intently at Peter Cushing and boomed some hard-sounding shit that, on sober reflection, didn’t necessarily make a whole lot of sense. Or perhaps I’m just referring to this film, 1965’s The Skull:
“When the skull strikes, you’ll scream!”
Directed by Freddie Francis
Starring Peter Cushing, Patrick Wymark, Jill Bennett and Christopher Lee
Review by gonzohistory, with comments from happyfett.
Back in 18-umpty-ump, a phrenologist digs up a grave, steals the corpse’s head and defleshes the skull. But he promptly dies in a tragic but totally-foreseeable skull-defleshing accident.
Flash forward to swinging London, where Christopher Maitland and Matthew Phillips (Cushing and Lee) are collectors of occult artefacts. Shady antiquities dealer Marco (Wymark) turns up with the skull for sale; he offers it to Maitland, claiming that it’s the skull of the infamous Marquis de Sade. Maitland turns him down, but gradually he becomes fascinated, especially when it appears that the skull was actually stolen from Phillips, who is convinced that it actually contains an evil spirit.
It does. And also there’s a cult of weirdos who dress up like judges and make people play Russian roulette. Or maybe it’s just a dream. And Marco gets murdered, leaving Maitland with the skull. Eventually the skull keeps trying to get Cushing to kill his wife (Bennett) but he doesn’t, and instead he kills himself– or does he?!
He doesn’t; it was the skull.
Continue reading The Skull (1965)