Voluptuous vampire vixens, undead slaves, cobra-women, grisly murders and creepy aliens. Yes, Hammer heaven continues throughout March as the UK's number one TV destination for all things horror brings you five more Hammer horror double-bills, which broadcast from Saturday March 1st – Saturday Mar 29th from 9.00pm. Plus Adam Green's HATCHET 2 makes its network premiere.
Sat 1st March at 21:00– THE PLAGUE OF THE ZOMBIES (1966)
Directed by John Gilling, this is Hammer's sole foray into the Zombie genre and centres on a mad Cornish squire who solves a labour crisis in his tin mines by turning local villagers into voodoo-controlled zombies. Dr. Thompson (Brook Williams) and his daughter Alice (Jacqueline Pearce) soon discover the unpleasant nocturnal habits of the shambling undead slaves, and Sir James Forbes (André Morell) arrives to investigate.
Sat 1st March at 22:45 – CAPTAIN KRONOS – VAMPIRE HUNTER (1974)
Considered one of the last great Hammer films, this swash-buckling vampire yarn, features a master swordsman, a former soldier and his hunchbacked assistant who hunt vampires, became a cult classic. Written and directed by Brian Clemens, it stars Horst Janson in the title role, along with John Carson, Shane Briant and Caroline Munro. It was originally the pilot for a planned television series.
Sat 8th March at 21.00 – THE REPTILE (1966)
Directed by John Gilling. the story centres on the hostile Dr. Franklin (Noel Willman), who hides in a mansion in Cornwall with his frightened daughter Anna (Jacqueline Pearce). Unknown to his neighbours, Franklin had been investigating a secret tribe of snake-people on his last trip to Borneo, and they reacted to his intrusion by making Anna one of them. As a result, she turns into a hideous cobra-woman every winter.
Sat 8th March at 22.45 – QUATERMASS AND THE PIT (1967)
Based on the BBC serial of the same name, and directed by Roy Ward Baker, this science-fiction horror stars Andrew Keir as Professor Bernard Quatermass, who discovers an ancient Martian spacecraft in the London Underground. The spacecraft has an intelligence of its own and once uncovered begins to exert a malign influence on the human psyche. Mayhem breaks out on the streets of London as the alien force grows in strength.
Sat 15th March at 21:00 – THE WITCHES (1966)
A schoolteacher, Gwen Mayfield, (Joan Fontaine) has a nervous breakdown after being exposed to witchcraft while teaching as a missionary in Africa. In an effort to recover, she becomes head teacher of a small private school in a rural English village. But Gwen soon detects a sinister undercurrent beneath the pleasantries of village life and discovers an active voodoo cult preying on a 14 year-old girl...
Sat 15th March at 22:45 – DEMONS OF THE MIND (1972)
Baron Zorn (Robert Hardy) keeps his two incestuous grown-up children locked up and separated, afraid that they will go mad – a fate that beset his deceased wife. He invites a doctor of dubious reputation (Patrick Magee) to supervise his son and daughter's mental health. Meanwhile, in the vicinity of the house, grisly murders are happening...
Directed by Peter Sykes, the film is based on the life of Franz Mesmer.
Sat 22nd Feb at 21:00 – DR. JEKYLL & SISTER HYDE (1971)
Martine Beswick brings a chilling conviction to the spidery Sister Hyde. Directed by Roy Ward Baker and co-starring Ralph Bates, the film is seen as Hammer's most successful attempt to combine gore and eroticism, taking advantage of the newly allowed freedom by censors. Beswick was a favourite of the film director Terence Young who cast her in two Bond films. A remake of the film is reportedly under consideration.
Sat 22nd March at 22:55 – LUST FOR A VAMPIRE (1971)
Yutte Stensgaard only appeared in one Hammer film but made quite an impression with male viewers as the predatory Mircalla who, as a member of the Karnstein Vampire Dynasty, bites her way through the pupils of a ladies finishing school. Directed by Jimmy Sangier and also starring Ralph Bates, Barbara Jefford and Suzanne Leigh, the film has developed a huge cult following around the world.
Sat 29th March at 21.00 – THE HORROR OF FRANKENSTEIN (1970)
Academically gifted but arrogant and amoral, Victor Frankenstein (Ralph Bates) will stop at nothing, not even patricide, to achieve his goal of recreating human life. He builds a man monster (played by David Browse) made up of a collection of spare body parts but when his handiwork turns out to have homicidal tendencies, he is happy to use this to his own ends rather than realise he has gone too far.
Sat 29th March at 22:50 – RASPUTIN: THE MAD MONK (1966)
Thrown out of his monastery for licentious and drunken behaviour, Rasputin (played by Christopher Lee), travels to St Petersburg to try his luck. Through a dalliance with one of the czarina's ladies in waiting he soon gains influence at court with his powers of healing and of hypnotism. But he also makes enemies who wish to see him dead. Directed by Don Sharp, the film is only loosely based on historical fact.
OTHER HIGHLIGHTS: Fri 28th March at 22:50 – HATCHET 2 (2010) – Network Premiere
Adam Green's sequel picks up right where the splatter-tastic original ended, Marybeth (Danielle Harris) escapes the clutches of the deformed, swamp-dwelling iconic killer Victor Crowley (Kane Hodder). After learning the truth about her family's connection to the hatchet-wielding madman, Marybeth returns to the Louisiana swamps along with an army of hunters to recover the bodies of her family and exact the bloodiest revenge against the bayou butcher. Also stars Tony Todd and Tom Holland.
Horror Channel is available in the UK on: Sky 319 / Virgin 149 / Freesat 138
Fuelled mostly by coffee and a pathological desire to rid the world of bad grammar, Daniel has found his calling by picking holes in other people's work. In the rare instances he's not editing, he's usually breaking things in the site's back end.