Simon goes back to his houseboat, followed by a conscience-stricken Joan. Her apology takes a while, and before long the gang comes to reclaim her. After a chase Joan jumps back onto the boat and Simon heads for open water. She suggests holing up on the cliff and hiding out in the often-empty sculptor's home until the gang, and her brother King especially, cools down. But King doesn't want to cool down and he has a hunch on where Joan would go. By the time he gets there Simon and Joan are gone, though not before getting it on, but Freya is back. King denounces her "nasty" art and smashes one of the sculptures. Meanwhile, Simon and Joan stray too close to forbidden turf and are chased down a cliff. King is nearly caught in a dragnet and flees down the cliff in turn.
Simon and Joan are rescued by a group of robe-clad children. We've seen them already earlier in the day; they're some sort of special students whom Bernard addresses via a two-way monitor. They seem to be bright kids but are frustrated with being unable to meet Bernard face to face. But that's something he can't do. We get a clue why as the kids interact with their new visitors. Joan discovers that the children are cold to her touch and don't warm when she holds their hands. The kids themselves know that they're being trained for some special purpose, but aren't sure what that is. One boy speculates that they're being sent into space, for instance. Once King catches up with the group, he offers his own diagnosis: "They're dead, I tell you!"
In a movie like this, you'd almost believe that a wrong turn could take our heroes to Hogwarts Academy (above). If so, pedagogical methods were more advanced back in the 60s (below)
This may be a Hammer film, but things aren't that bad. They just might be even worse for everyone involved in this incredible genre-switch of a story. Evan Jones's screenplay, adapted from a novel by H. L. Lawrence, flows naturally from juvenile-delinquent film to near-apocalyptic science fiction, with a dash of conspiracy paranoia thrown in. Even better, it still has time to develop its characters, especially Reed's King and Alexander Knox's Bernard. King is an explosive package of issues ranging from his Scarface-like protectiveness toward his sister to his hysterically hypocritical reactionary self-righteousness about everything from May-December romances to modern art. It did leave me wonder how this weirdo ended up leading a gang, but Reed makes you believe in what you see. Bernard, meanwhile, is set up as the film's true villain, and lives up to that promise, but we also see that he has compassion for his young charges, if not for anyone else. We see him argue with military types in favor of more freedom of movement and decreased surveillance of them, but when it looks like the kids will break out, he has no choice but to act with absolute ruthlessness, proving that he wasn't joking about fatal consequences for anyone who finds out too much. Knox handles the hard chore well of playing a genuinely sinister character who isn't really happy with what he has to do. The other actors acquit themselves well, even Macdonald Carey despite his being pretty much a poor man's William Holden in his role and somewhat unconvincing as a young woman's lover.
Losey and Jones also do something provocative with statues, both the monuments in town and Freya's abstract, half-finished work. They seem to be making a statement about the degeneration of man's own self-image from the iconography of George III to the "nasty" expressionism of Freya's figures, and they clearly invite analogies between the statues and both the children at the base (being molded by Bernard) and King (as a case of arrested development). Both are candidates for "the damned," as is just about everybody in the picture.
Genghis Khan. Turner Classic Movies took cinephiles by surprise a few years ago by broadcasting the uncut version with no fanfare, and that version, retaining the American title, is probably the main attraction in Sony Pictures Home Entertainment's new Icons of Suspense collection. If you're into genre bending, Joseph Losey, Oliver Reed, or absolutely bleak endings, it definitely should be an attraction for you.
The trailer was uploaded to YouTube by elenanoque.
And from AlexV66, Black Leather, Black Leather, rock rock rock!