The Devil Rides out(AKA: The Devil’s Bride)
The Devil Rides Out is easily one of the most entertaining of Terence Fisher’s Hammer movies.The movie stars Christopher Lee, Charles Gray, Nike Arrighi, Leon Greene, Patrick Mower, Sarah Lawson and Paul Eddington.
This is the greatest of Terence Fisher based upon based on the 1934 novel of the same name by Dennis Wheatley. Its screenplay is written by Richard Matheson. who was one of the best horror writers and most imaginative of Hollywood as his work does have such range to many horror classics to twilight zone and he wrote i am legend wrote the screenplay to replace an earlier draft that was deemed too British. If you want to watch some twilight zones to see the work of Richard I would suggest to watch And When the Sky Was Opened-Third from the Sun-The Last Flight-A World of Difference-A World of His Own-Nick of Time-The Invaders-Once Upon a Time(famously stars Buster Keaton)-Little Girl Lost-Young Man’s Fancy-Mute-Death Ship-Steel-Nightmare at 20,000 Feet-Night Call-Spur of the Moment. He wrote many of the classic twilight zone series. I would say what Richard Matheson gave the Sci-Fi and horror genre really did leave its mark forever. Devil rides out really was a hard movie to make at its time due to its subject.
Christopher Lee headlines Terence Fisher’s devil rides out. It was not a big enormous success, either in Great Britain or the U.S. (where it was first theatrically released as The Devil’s Bride. It is now considered one of the finest movies to come out of hammer studio. It was also one of the favorites that Christopher Lee did as he would often remark he would star in a remake with sing modern special effects and playing De Richleau closer to his age from the book. The movie showed up before an onslaught of Satanic-themed horror movies in the 1970s, such as The Exorcist and The Omen. Compared to them the hammer movie seems very tame with its 1930’s setting and orgies.
The screenplay written by Richard Matheson adheres closely to the Wheatley’s story it is based upon called the devil rides out. It does strip out many of the more outrageous trappings of the novel but really does stick closely to the book. The movie pains to create more realistic in tone rituals. The script tightens up the tale to really make it tell the story that requires less explanation to the audience. It’s even have an ending that does feel tad like the normal wrap up of Richard Matheson, Its wrap up is clean slate. It does that over the novels rushed dash to Greece ending. It’s a very wonderful screenplay that Richard Matheson wrote out and crafted a gem.
Terence Fisher crafted out many superb scenes. Terence Fisher crafted out many amazing scenes that does have some magic and charm to them. It’s his direction of the remarkable screenplay that brings to life his finest movie he directed by hammer. Its car chase is one such scene that really does stand out. It’s really a horror masterpiece that is very well crafted out and headed.
Christopher Lee urns in one of his best performances as Duc de Richelieu, a religious man who stands firmly against witchcraft as he gives us one of the finest performances he ever did on the screen. Charles Gray(rocky horror fame) plays Mercata, the leader of the cult who really gives out one of his finest roles. Leon Greene plays a fine role as Richelieu’s friend Rex Van Ryn. It is one of his finest hours as he does bring home a role that is great. Nike Arrighi as Tanith Carlisle really does a fine job to in his role. I would say everyone gives some good performances that does give its great work of class in acting as its truly a well acted horror classic.
Hammer films are characterized by relatively low budgets which does mean normally sets that does have way of limiting things which is greatly used to great effect in devil rides out. Simon’s cold gray observatory turns malevolent purely by adding scratching noises from a cupboard. It’s also two most famous sets are sacrificial ceremony at Mocata’s mansion and the Grand Sabbat, supposedly a grand ritual orgy for Simon and Tanith’s intended baptism, veer toward poorly-staged pantomime. When Mocata invokes Satan. It’s some great setwork there as they are some of the finest hammer ever did. Yes many things are very stagey and low but that’s hammer charm at its finest. It had some wonderful set work that did use its limited nature to great effect.
James Bernard Hammer’s regular composer does a score that does use the syllables of the title to compose a powerful rising theme over the main credits, and uses it as the leitmotif over moments of Satanic power. It does serve a great storytelling part in this movie that does make it stand out as one of hammer’s finest scores.
Arthur Grant Cinematography wonderfully captures the story and movie to a great effect. He captures many scenes in ways that does make for the movie to have some scenes stand out as some of the finest ever captured in a hammer movie for its budgeted sets and outfit which is a normal hammer trait. It’s truly outstanding work by him.
The Devil Rides Out (AKA: The Devil’s Bride) may not be the big hit but it is a success that does really stand the test of time forever. It’s wonderful acting-musical score-Cinematography-sets-direction. Everything seems to have clicked here as we have a masterpiece of horror that does indeed to be considered among the greatest of horror movies all time.
The Ruth Rating: