CANNON MONTH 2: The Beast in the Cellar (1970)

In addition to importing Joe Sarno films, Cannon started distributing the films of England’s Tigon, playing this on a double feature with the incredible The Blood On Satan’s Claw.

Soldiers are being torn to shreds by a wild cat, but Joyce and Ellie Ballantyne (Flora Robson and Beryl Reid) know that it’s their brother Steven (Dafydd Havard), who has escaped the cellar he’s been trapped in for thirty years. Joyce is injured trying to fix the hole that Steven has dug and Ellie must tell the police the truth: After their soldier father came back from war, he beat their brother. They didn’t want Steven to turn out the same way, so to keep him from fighting in the Second World War, they drugged him and kept him high for three decades, creating a killing machine who hates soldiers.

There’s a really great lovemaking to murder scene at the start of the film, showing that director and writer James Kelley (who wrote Doctor Blood’s Coffin and also directed What the Peeper Saw) knows how to create a scene filled with tons of quick cuts and no small amount of blood and terror.

Also known as Young Man, I Think You’re Dying, this gets pretty talky and not much happens for a while, but when the killings happen and the camera gets shaky, it’s pretty wild.

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