Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Burn, Witch, Burn

 (1962) ***
(Also known as Night of the Eagle)
Norman Taylor has it all: beautiful wife, cushy job as a professor of Psychology at a small college (where he is rumored to be on the brink of being offered The Chair), lovely house...what could be better?

 Things are good.

Well, not much could be better, but lots of things could be worse, as he finds out.

He discovers that his wife, Tansy, has been practicing witchcraft for a couple of years after the couple visited Jamaica.  Norman is oblivious that everyone around him has it out for him.  The other professors, and their wives (like this lovely lady),

are out for proverbial blood when this newcomer pops into their midst and is all successful and shit.  Tansy warns him that the only reason things have been so good is because of all the stuff she has been doing.  Norman, believing that things like superstition, witchcraft, etc. are a bunch of hoo-haa, makes Tansy round up all the amulets and skulls and cemetery dust she has in the house and they burn it.  While still trying to convince him that he should leave well enough alone, Tansy says, "I will not be held responsible for what happens to us if you make me give up my protections!"

And man, does Norman have those words coming back to him over the ensuing days.  Because let me tell you, things go south fast.  I don't want to give away too many details on the rest.  Suffice to say, the black and white filming and general mood is stellar.  Creepy, dramatic music, excellent use of shadows and light - all that good stuff helps set the tone for an interesting flick.  It does get a little silly in the last fifteen minutes, but I let that go considering the rest of the movie.  And Norman's high-waisted pants.  Check those bad boys out!


Johnny Sweatpants said...

Love it! Bitchface looks like she's capable of some serious evil. Where on earth did you discover this movie? Your review makes me wish I focused on witches instead of crazy clowns.

Also as soon as I saw the caption "burn witch, burn", I immediately got this atrocious KISS song stuck in my head (featuring the infamously awful line "I wanna put my log in your fireplace"). Thanks a lot DCD!

DCD said...

Found it in the Netflix streaming stack. I do like finding movies no one has reviewed before and this one sounded promising - and it was!

I was trying to get that song in your head!

Crystal Math said...

Thanks JSP now I'VE got that song stuck in my head!

. . . some things you can't un-hear. :-/

Octopunk said...

Whoah, I'm totally not clicking on that link.

What an excellent title! It would make a good double feature with Die, Monster, Die!. I note the lack of an exclamation point, but given that screenshot of the title I completely approve.

Nice review! I think if I were in that situation I'd apply a Don't Ask Don't Tell policy to the witchcraft.

JPX said...

Thank a lot, DCD, now I have that awful KISS song stuck in my head!

Seriously though, this sounds excellent! I'm jealous that you found it first.