Review Date: 7/1/13
Cast: Peter Cushing, Patrick Wymark, Christopher Lee
Peter Cushing is an unassuming, rational, and sane professor of the occult, until he chances upon the skull of the Marquis de Sade. Legend has it that the skull is possessed by evil spirits that drive men to kill, and it isn't long before the quiet doctor succumbs to its blasphemous charms. The police are baffled by the case, and despite all of the supporting evidence, they refuse to believe that witchcraft is involved.
While it's an interesting premise, the execution is dreadfully boring. Peter Cushing and Christopher Lee are always fun to watch, but even they can't keep the production afloat. Some of the cinematography is interesting (the skull cam, in particular), and the highlight of the film is a disturbingly surreal dream sequence. The notorious skull is capable of flight and teleportation, and can even muster up enough force to break through glass. Unfortunately, apart from some spooky musical cues, there is nothing remotely scary about the film. Its biggest scare tactic is a pulsating light, which quite honestly isn't scary at all.