HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
Newest Reviews
Killer Party
Holmes & Watson
Monster in the Closet
Sand, The
Glass
My Brilliant Career
Knife for the Ladies, A
Man in the Attic
Destroyer
Fillmore
Bumblebee
No Kidding
Honkytonk Man
Woman in the Window, The
Shed of the Dead
Dead Easy
Tucked
Widows
Last Movie Star, The
Death Game
Juliet, Naked
November
Arcadia
Sugar Hill
House with the Clock in Its Walls, The
Devil Thumbs a Ride, The
Suspiria
Secret People
Spy Who Dumped Me, The
Beautiful Stranger
House That Jack Built, The
Undercover
White Chamber
R.P.M.
Summer of 84
On Secret Service
Survive!
My Sister Eileen
Goosebumps 2: Haunted Halloween
Last Picture Show, The
   
 
Newest Articles
Outer Space and Outta Sight: Gonks Go Beat on Blu-ray
Tucked: The Derren Nesbitt Interview
Locomotion Pictures: The Best of British Transport Films on Blu-ray
Roman Scandals: Extreme Visions from Ancient Rome
Spider-Wrong and Spider-Right: The Dragon's Challenge and Into the Spider-Verse
Monster Dog: Cujo on Blu-ray
For Christ's Sake: Jesus Christ Superstar and The Last Temptation of Christ
Not In Front of the Children: Inappropriate Kids Movies
Deeper into Ozploitation: Next of Kin and Fair Game
Between the Wars: Babylon Berlin Series 1&2 on DVD
Hard Luck Story: Detour on Blu-ray
Oh, What Happened to You? The Likely Lads on Blu-ray
Killer Apps: The Rise of the Evil 60s Supercomputers
How 1970s Can You Get? Cliff Richard in Take Me High vs Never Too Young to Rock
A Perfect Engine, An Eating Machine: The Jaws Series
   
 
  Twisted Nerve Let's PretendBuy this film here.
Year: 1968
Director: Roy Boulting
Stars: Hayley Mills, Hywel Bennett, Billie Whitelaw, Phyllis Calvert, Frank Finlay, Barry Foster, Salmaan Peerzada, Thorley Walters, Christian Roberts, Timothy West, Gretchen Franklin, Clifford Cox, Timothy Bateson, Michael Cadman, Barrie Dignam, Mollie Maureen
Genre: Thriller
Rating:  5 (from 1 vote)
Review: Today, as he often does, rich kid Martin Durnley (Hywel Bennett) is visiting his brother, who due to being afflicted with Down's Syndrome stays in a special home. As he chats with the doctor in charge, mention is made of possible psychopathic tendencies in the siblings of those who are so afflicted, and Martin drops his cup of tea in an unconscious gesture. This is because he does have such leanings, as can be seen when he goes to a department store and shoplifts a toy duck, which the store detectives blame on him and innocent stranger Susan (Hayley Mills), believing them to be accomplices. Susan manages to persuade them otherwise, but Martin has a trick up his sleeve: he pretends to be simple-minded to charm his way out of the situation, a ruse that he follows when he tries to get to know Susan better...

The late sixties were a funny time for cinema as filmmakers attempted to cater for more adult audiences in more self-consciously daring ways; by the seventies many of them had the hang of it, but before then audiences were treated, if that's the right word, to bizarre efforts like this one from the celebrated British team of the Boulting Brothers. Obviously patterning themselves after Alfred Hitchcock, it's the whistly Bernard Hermann theme that is most recognisable about the project today, as it was used prominently on Quentin Tarantino's Kill Bill soundtrack. That said, there was a measure of notoriety about the film in its day.

This was because of the flimsy excuses the psychopath has for acting as he does. It's absurd to say that the villain's mental unbalance was explained by him being a brother of a Down's Syndrome boy, yet that's what a doctor proposes later on in the film, and understandably there was much protest from those who knew better. For this reason the film starts off with a tacked-on voiceover telling us that basically the science of the story you're about to watch is bullshit, only he puts it in more sensitive terms, which is more than the rest of the tale affords us. We can blame scriptwriters Leo Marks (of Peeping Tom infamy - he couldn't half pick them) and Roy Boulting, the director, working from a story by Roger Marshall for all this.

If you succeed in forgetting the ridiculousness of the premise, then there are compensations. Bennett's Martin is unnerving in the manner he worms his way into librarian Susan's life, using the name Georgie and keeping up his charade to insane lengths, even to the point of moving into the boarding house that she shares with her mother (Billie Whitelaw). Mills is her usual wholesome self, whose well meaning character's nature is exploited, only beginning to cotton on to what's really going on when Georgie forces a kiss on her. Meanwhile, his overbearing stepfather (Frank Finlay) is trying to send him off to Australia, but he has other ideas, ideas involving a sharp pair of scissors. As a thriller, Twisted Nerve's bad taste and committed central performance carry it some of the way, but its determination to shock in a modern style leaves it looking pretty silly decades later. Not that it was particularly sensible back then.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 4207 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star do you think makes the best coffee?
Emma Stone
Anna Kendrick
Michelle Rodriguez
Sir Patrick Stewart
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Andrew Pragasam
Enoch Sneed
  Derrick Smith
Paul Shrimpton
Darren Jones
George White
Stately Wayne Manor
   

 

Last Updated: