Night Creatures

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  • NR
  • 1962
  • 1 hr 23 min
  • 6.6  (3,353)

Night Creatures is a 1962 British horror film directed by Peter Graham Scott and starring Peter Cushing, Yvonne Romain, and Patrick Allen. Based on the novel 'Doctor Syn: A Tale of the Romney Marsh' by Russell Thorndike, the movie is set in the late eighteenth century in the village of Dymchurch on the Kentish coast of England. It tells the story of a group of smugglers and their fight against corrupt officials, led by the mysterious and terrifying 'Ghost of Captain Clegg.'

The movie begins with a group of smugglers, led by the charismatic and enigmatic Captain Clegg (Peter Cushing), bringing illicit goods ashore in a small rowing boat. They are met by a group of local villagers who help them to conceal their goods and avoid detection by the authorities. The villagers are led by the Reverend Dr. Blyss (Patrick Allen), a stern and uncompromising man who is also the local magistrate and chief enforcer of the law.

However, it soon becomes apparent that all is not as it seems in Dymchurch. Strange rumors abound of a ghostly figure, said to be the vengeful spirit of Captain Clegg, haunting the local churchyard and frightening the villagers. Meanwhile, the arrival of a new local squire, Sir Humphrey Pengallon (Oliver Reed), and his beautiful niece, Imogene (Yvonne Romain), brings a new element of intrigue to the village. Sir Humphrey is determined to uncover the smugglers' activities and bring them to justice, while Imogene becomes embroiled in a dangerous love triangle with the Reverend Dr. Blyss and Captain Clegg.

As the plot unfolds, the tension between the smugglers and the authorities reaches boiling point, with violent clashes and daring escapades on the high seas. At the same time, the mystery of the Ghost of Captain Clegg deepens, as more and more clues are uncovered about his true identity and motives. The climax of the movie takes place on a stormy night, as the smugglers attempt to flee the village with their contraband, and the true identity of the Ghost is finally revealed.

One of the strengths of Night Creatures is its atmospheric setting and use of location. The movie was filmed on location in and around the Kentish village of Dymchurch, which provides an authentic backdrop for the story. The village, with its winding streets, thatched cottages, and marshy landscape, adds to the sense of mystery and claustrophobia that permeates the movie. The use of real boats and horses, rather than studio props, also adds to the sense of authenticity, and gives the action sequences an added sense of danger and excitement.

Another impressive aspect of the movie is the quality of the performances. Peter Cushing is excellent as the enigmatic and charismatic Captain Clegg, bringing a sense of energy and depth to the role. Patrick Allen is also compelling as the conflicted Reverend Dr. Blyss, torn between his duty to enforce the law and his love for Imogene. Yvonne Romain is a standout as Imogene, bringing a sense of intelligence and independence to the role, and adding a welcome feminist edge to the movie. Finally, Oliver Reed's performance as Squire Pengallon is also noteworthy, giving the character an air of menacing authority.

Overall, Night Creatures is a stylish and enjoyable horror movie, with plenty of action, intrigue, and mystery. The movie's setting and use of location, combined with strong performances from the cast, make it a noteworthy addition to the British horror canon. Fans of Peter Cushing, in particular, will enjoy his commanding and charismatic portrayal of Captain Clegg, which showcases his range as an actor. While not a classic of the genre, Night Creatures is a solid and entertaining horror movie that deserves to be better known.

Night Creatures is a 1962 adventure movie with a runtime of 1 hour and 23 minutes. It has received mostly positive reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 6.6.

Night Creatures
Where to Watch Night Creatures
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  • Release Date
  • MPAA Rating
  • Runtime
    1 hr 23 min
  • IMDB Rating
    6.6  (3,353)