Hands Of The Ripper  [DVD]
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At a séance the now grown-up Anna [Angharad Rees] assists her foster mother, the medium Mrs Golding [Dora Bryan], by pretending to be the voice of a spirit communicating with the dead child of a couple, Mr & Mrs Wilson [Barry Lowe & Elizabeth MacLennan]. However, she becomes upset midway through and stops speaking so the medium is forced to finish prematurely. As the guests prepare to leave, one of them, the sceptical Dr. Pritchard [Eric Porter], notices Anna's foot underneath a curtain and stands on it, revealing the hidden Anna. As they leave, Pritchard confides his disgust of charlatans like Mrs Golding to his son Michael [Keith Bell]. With having enjoyed the commentary that Kim Newman had done with Alan Jones for Dario Argento's The Bird With The Crystal Plumage,I started to search round for other commentaries that Newman was involved in,and I stumbled upon a title which was made during the last days of Hammer Horror,which led to me getting ready to shake hands with the ripper. This English production was directed by Peter Sasdy & was presumably an attempt by Hammer studios to try something different from it's well know Dracula & Frankenstein series of films, personally I really liked it for what it was even though I know it's not that well known or thought of that highly which is a shame. The script by L.W. Davidson was based on a short printed story by Edward Spencer Shew & seems to take itself very seriously which I thought it just about got away with, the basic concept is rather far fetched & silly but I thought it worked quite well & was something a bit different even if it unfolds in a slightly predictable & linear way. Some of the character's are a bit underdeveloped & some of them are a bit dull but that's probably how people behaved in Victorian London. The film moves along at a nice pace & is never boring plus it has a nice ending which seemed very fitting. The only thing which didn't really work for me was that it didn't take much for Anna to go into here trance & be possessed & since it was so easy why had it never happened before? Oh & I personally wouldn't let a person who had just slit my maids throat in cold blood walk around my house & do whatever she wanted especially while my family was there!
Hands of Jack the Ripper - AllMusic Hands of Jack the Ripper - AllMusic
Given the time it was made, and the flow of influences, we must suppose that Hands of the Ripper was taking its cues from the Italian horror industry, but I don't think that's quite right. The thing is, there's never a minute's doubt that Anna is the killer - not from us, and not really from the other characters. There is, I suppose, some mystery around whether psychosis or possession is responsible for her actions, but L.W. Davidson's screenplay doesn't really care about answering that question. I would go so far as to say that we have in this film one of the earliest direct antecedents to the slasher movie, in which we are invited to watch a string of violent murders with no pretext of a mystery behind them at all, as there would be in a giallo: Anna is more in the line of Michael Myers or Jason Voorhees, a killer known to us from the outset, whose actions are meant tob e satisfying spectacle in and of themselves. Pritchard visits Anna in the police cells but she does not have any memory of the murder. Since Pritchard is a psychiatric doctor he arranges Anna's release to his care. He takes her home and to his late wife's room and instructs the maid Dolly [Marjie Lawrence] to look after her. This good if not great Hammer production is efficiently entertaining, as it hits the ground running and offers up a provocative story of one forward-thinking person attempting to find an alternative way of dealing with mental illness. Some viewers may feel that the proliferation of elaborate, amusingly gory murders throw things asunder considering the more interesting aspects to the script (and Hammers' typically stylish period atmosphere). Also, one may grow impatient with the protagonists' stubbornness and sneakiness as he goes about doing everything possible to try to make his method work.U.S. Television Introduction" (7:07) is audio from the original ABC presentation of "Hands of the Ripper," where, to fill in the gaps caused by excised gore, Universal shot special scenes to help explain the setting and psychological profile of the characters. Due to a studio fire, the footage is presumed lost, but the audio, despite its rough quality, is intriguing. Hooker with a Heart of Gold: When Anna escapes from her home in a trance, a Whitechapel prostitute thinks she's new to the job and takes her home to have a chat and give her better advice on the line of work. Unfortunately, Anna kills her. Overall, it is a Good Looking Film as usual for the always Visually Interesting Hammer Studios and is one of the most Violent in its Catalog.
Hands of the Ripper - movie: watch streaming online - JustWatch Hands of the Ripper - movie: watch streaming online - JustWatch
Still Gallery (5:43) contains 72 images from the production and marketing of the movie, including lobby cards and poster designs. Visiting a medium with some friends, psychoanalyses Dr. John Pritchard discovers that the sounds of the "spirits" have actually been made by a girl called Anna,who was hidden away from view.Leaving with the group,Pitchard notices an MP enter the building,and pay to have sex with Anna,in what Pitchard realises is a secret brothel.Waiting round for his carriage (as you do!) Pitchard hears a blood curdling scream.Rushing in,Pitchard is horrified to find that Anna has brutally killed the medium.Overall, a solid effort from Hammer that lovers of 70s horror cinema should find to be satisfactory. The problem with this is is that, as interesting and complicated as Anna is, Rees isn't up to the job of playing her. Overall, Hands of the Ripper has an unusually strong cast for a Hammer film, particularly one of this vintage: Porter is absolutely terrific, as is Jane Merrow as his optimistic future daughter-in-law, Laura. Keith Bell, playing Pritchard's son and Laura's lover Michael, is far more interesting than the usual pretty boys Hammer was putting in that kind of role in the '70s, bringing a lustful good humor to the role. Godfrey brings substantial nuance out of what's maybe the film's most surprising role, a shitty libertine who turns out to have much more going on than just the repulsive sex fiend of his first scenes. Hell, even in the throwaway roles, Bryan really does make it seem like Mrs. Golding is torn up about selling Anna, and Lynda Baron brings something maternal and funny and lively to her role as a doomed prostitute.
Hands of the Ripper (1971) - Plot - IMDb
Hopefully HANDS OF THE RIPPER will be a Hammer horror to arrive soon on DVD, complete, and well handled. With so much hooplah made about Hammer's most famous projects (HORROR OF DRACULA, CURSE OF FRANKENSTEIN, et.al.), it's a shame HANDS OF THE RIPPER often gets overlooked by fans, and therefore by the public as well. Hands of the Ripper" (1971) is Victorian horror from Hammer that's similar to their previous "The Two Faces of Dr. Jekyll" (1960), but less psychologically fascinating or entertaining.
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Hands of the Ripper" brings a new twist to this theme. Dr. John Pritchard is an eminent psychiatrist in Edwardian London who brings one of his patients, a young woman named Anna, into his home. This might seem a risky thing to do, as Pritchard is well aware (although the police are not) that Anna is not only mentally unstable but also a murderess. Pritchard, however, is an enthusiastic Freudian who believes that the new science of psychoanalysis will enable him not only to find out the cause of her murderous impulses but also to cure them. The sceptic-who-is-proved-wrong is a familiar figure in horror films. As soon as we hear the words "I don't believe in ghosts/witches/vampires/whatever" we know that retribution is lurking just around the corner. In some films this retribution will take no more serious form than the humiliation of being forced to eat one's words, but in others the forces of the supernatural will take bloody revenge on those who wrong them by doubting their existence.