🎥 The Devil Rides Out – 1968

The Story …

Set in London and the south of England in 1929, the story finds erudite Nicholas, Duc de Richleau (Christopher Lee), investigating the strange actions of his protegé, the son of a late friend, Simon Aron (Patrick Mower), who has a house replete with strange markings and a pentagram.

He quickly deduces that Simon is involved with the occult. De Richleau and his friend Rex Van Ryn (Leon Greene) manage to rescue Simon and another young initiate, Tanith (Niké Arrighi), from a devil-worshipping cult.

During the rescue, they disrupt a May Day ceremony on Salisbury Plain, in which the Devil appears under the guise of the “Goat of Mendes” …

They escape to the country home of de Richleau’s niece Marie (Sarah Lawson) and her husband Richard Eaton (Paul Eddington).

They are followed by the group’s leader, Mocata (Charles Gray), who has a psychic connection to the two initiates.

After visiting the house while de Richleau is absent to discuss the matter and an unsuccessful attempt to influence the initiates to return, Mocata forces de Richleau and the other occupants to defend themselves through a night of black magic attacks, ending with the conjuring of the Angel of Death. De Richleau repels the angel, but it kills Tanith instead (for, once summoned, it must take a life).

His attacks defeated, Mocata kidnaps the Eatons’ young daughter Peggy (Rosalyn Landor). The Duc has Tanith’s spirit possess Marie in order to find Mocata, but they only are able to get a single clue, and Rex realizes that the cultists are at a house he visited earlier.

Simon tries to rescue Peggy on his own, but he is recaptured by the cult. De Richleau, Richard, and Rex also try to rescue her, but they are defeated by Mocata. Suddenly, a powerful force (or Tanith herself) controls Marie and ends Peggy’s trance. She then leads Peggy in the recitation of a spell which visits divine retribution upon the cultists and transforms their coven room into a church.

When the Duc and his companions awaken, they discover that the spell has reversed time and changed the future in their favour. Simon and Tanith have survived, and Mocata’s spell to conjure the Angel of Death has been reflected back on him.

Divine judgment ends his life, and he is subject to eternal damnation for his unholy summoning of the Angel of Death. De Richleau comments that it is God to whom they must be thankful.

Credits :

  • Directed by : Terence Fisher
  • Screenplay by : Richard Matheson
  • Based on : The Devil Rides Out 1934 novel by Dennis Wheatley
  • Produced by : Anthony Nelson Keys
  • Cinematography : Arthur Grant
  • Edited by : Spencer Reeve
  • Music by : James Bernard
  • Production Companies : Hammer Film Productions and Seven Arts Productions
  • Distributed by : Warner-Pathé and 20th Century Fox
  • Release Dates : 20 July 1968

Cast :

  • Christopher Lee as Nicholas, Duc de Richleau
  • Charles Gray as Mocata
  • Niké Arrighi as Tanith Carlisle
  • Leon Greene as Rex Van Ryn
  • Patrick Mower as Simon Aron
  • Gwen Ffrangcon-Davies as Countess d’Urfe
  • Sarah Lawson as Marie Eaton
  • Paul Eddington as Richard Eaton
  • Rosalyn Landor as Peggy Eaton
  • Russell Waters as Malin
  • Eddie Powell as The Goat of Mendes
  • Yemi Ajibade as African cultist
  • Peter Swanwick as cultist
  • Keith Pyott as Max

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