Jack Cardiff

  • Jack Cardiff – The Mutations AKA The Freakmaker (1974)

    1971-1980CultHorrorJack CardiffUnited Kingdom

    Not satisfied with the pace of natural selection in driving evolution, a deranged botanist decides to create his own genetically engineered Mutations! With the promise of using his experiments to “cure” them, Dr. Nolter (Pleasence) enlists members of the local Freakshow to help him kidnap students from a nearby college to use as human guinea pigs! Using the same techniques that he developed mixing the DNA of plants and animals, he begins crossbreeding plants and humans with unpredictable results. One by one his failed experiments are cast off to the circus until the freaks have had enough and seek their bloody revenge. This updated take on Todd Browning’s FREAKS is directed by award winning director / cinematographer Jack Cardiff (African Queen, Red Shoes) and features a stellar cast including Donald Pleasence, Tom Baker, Brad Harris and Michael Dunn.Read More »

  • Jack Cardiff – Beyond This Place AKA Web of Evidence (1959)

    1951-1960DramaJack CardiffMysteryUnited Kingdom

    Plot Synopsis by Hal Erickson
    Beyond This Place is a tame murder mystery based on a novel by A. J. Cronin. Van Johnson is cast as an American citizen whose British father has supposedly been dead for years. On a visit to London, Johnson discovers that his father is very much alive, serving a life sentence for murder. Johnson inaugurates his own investigation, retraces the trail of circumstantial evidence, and unearths the real culprit. Director Jack Cardiff was not happy with his work on Beyond This Place, possibly because he was obliged for box office purposes to use an American star in an essentially British story. The film was released in the US as Web of Evidence.Read More »

  • Jack Cardiff – Sons and Lovers (1960)

    1951-1960ClassicsDramaJack CardiffUnited Kingdom


    Sons and Lovers
    At the Brattle through Saturday
    By William A. Nitze, March 26, 1962

    Sons and Lovers does not lend itself easily to a movie script, but Jack Cardiff has transformed Lawrence’s novel into a superb film. The reader must follow a slow and agonizing series of conflicting passions presented in a style which is often deceptively complex. Through a skillful rearrangement of plot elements and dialogue Cardiff has condensed the novel into an hour and 45 minutes without sacrificing its subtlety and force.

    The film opens halfway through the story: Paul Morel is in his early twenties. Within the first ten minutes one grasps all of the important relationships of the drama: the abandonment of Walter Morel by his wife and sons, who detest him because of his weakness and cruelty; Paul’s desperate attachment to his mother, and his frustrated love for Miriam. The film then concentrates on the final failure of Miriam to break through Mrs. Morel’s hold on her son, Paul’s unsuccessful affair with Clara Dawes and his final liberation through his mother’s death.Read More »

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