Blood on Satan's Claw Reviews

  • Sep 03, 2018

    Part of the so-called "Unholy Trilogy" of folk horror films that also includes The Wicker Man (1973) and The Witchfinder General (1968) by other directors. The genre also could be stretched to include Curse of the Demon (1957) or The Devil Rides Out (1968) and newer films such as The Blair Witch Project (1999) and The Witch (2015). It is a genre I like very much, full of uncanny creepiness in natural surroundings and an older paganistic (Satanistic/left-hand-path) challenge to reality as we know it. The films ask you to accept that evil is real and terrifying supernatural forces are at work in our world, sometimes brought to bear on our lives by those humans who learn the magick needed. In The Blood on Satan's Claw, it is a group of teenagers who discover an evil creature that can be fed by unspeakable evil acts -- murder and rape - presented unblinkingly here in all their horror, enacted by little more than children. So, with its nudity and violence, the film is also an exploitation flick, borne of its time, and ready and willing to shock the midnight movie crowd. But if you can put the awfulness of the acts aside, the atmosphere created by director Piers Haggard and his team, depicting life in a rural English village in the 17th century is spellbinding. It is a time when witches were believed to be real and among us and witch-hunters sought them out. The true history of these events is horrible and sad but the film shows us a world where black magic is real, violent, scary, and anarchic. You really never know what can happen next.

    Part of the so-called "Unholy Trilogy" of folk horror films that also includes The Wicker Man (1973) and The Witchfinder General (1968) by other directors. The genre also could be stretched to include Curse of the Demon (1957) or The Devil Rides Out (1968) and newer films such as The Blair Witch Project (1999) and The Witch (2015). It is a genre I like very much, full of uncanny creepiness in natural surroundings and an older paganistic (Satanistic/left-hand-path) challenge to reality as we know it. The films ask you to accept that evil is real and terrifying supernatural forces are at work in our world, sometimes brought to bear on our lives by those humans who learn the magick needed. In The Blood on Satan's Claw, it is a group of teenagers who discover an evil creature that can be fed by unspeakable evil acts -- murder and rape - presented unblinkingly here in all their horror, enacted by little more than children. So, with its nudity and violence, the film is also an exploitation flick, borne of its time, and ready and willing to shock the midnight movie crowd. But if you can put the awfulness of the acts aside, the atmosphere created by director Piers Haggard and his team, depicting life in a rural English village in the 17th century is spellbinding. It is a time when witches were believed to be real and among us and witch-hunters sought them out. The true history of these events is horrible and sad but the film shows us a world where black magic is real, violent, scary, and anarchic. You really never know what can happen next.

  • Dec 24, 2017

    a nice horror movie that reminded me of witchfinder general, mark of the devil, the wicker man

    a nice horror movie that reminded me of witchfinder general, mark of the devil, the wicker man

  • May 08, 2017

    This is a British horror film from 1970. It is an unnerving film for a modern audience and was extremely controversial for its time. The best way to watch this film is to imagine yourself back in 1970. Hammer Horror and Tigon International were cranking out some fine horror films based on more traditional source material. Originally titled, "Satan's Skin," the title was changed for the American audience and seemed to have worked well. It is known as what we might now call "folk horror" (which includes "The Wicker Man" and I posit the newly released "The Witch"). Set in the 1600's in rural England, a farm hand accidentally plows up a deformed skull, which is secreted away from the field before he can provide witnesses to the thing. The skull is that of a demon and it begins to call to the children of the village to offer themselves to the demon and provide him with body parts for his reanimation. This is all a bit vaguely explained, but the storyline works if you have patience. This is a slow boil film. It was also quite scandalous at the time as the female lead was presented in full frontal nudity (in a time when respectable films did not do that - and even moreso, she was underaged at the time). Gratuitous nudity aside, this film has been a favorite of mine since I first saw it as a pre-teen on late night television. Creepy.

    This is a British horror film from 1970. It is an unnerving film for a modern audience and was extremely controversial for its time. The best way to watch this film is to imagine yourself back in 1970. Hammer Horror and Tigon International were cranking out some fine horror films based on more traditional source material. Originally titled, "Satan's Skin," the title was changed for the American audience and seemed to have worked well. It is known as what we might now call "folk horror" (which includes "The Wicker Man" and I posit the newly released "The Witch"). Set in the 1600's in rural England, a farm hand accidentally plows up a deformed skull, which is secreted away from the field before he can provide witnesses to the thing. The skull is that of a demon and it begins to call to the children of the village to offer themselves to the demon and provide him with body parts for his reanimation. This is all a bit vaguely explained, but the storyline works if you have patience. This is a slow boil film. It was also quite scandalous at the time as the female lead was presented in full frontal nudity (in a time when respectable films did not do that - and even moreso, she was underaged at the time). Gratuitous nudity aside, this film has been a favorite of mine since I first saw it as a pre-teen on late night television. Creepy.

  • Sep 18, 2016

    A low budget British horror set in medievil times when they used to declare any unwanted wife or daughter as a witch to the local lynch mob as a cheap alternative to divorce. Similar to Witchfinder General, this cult film is pretty stupid, especially some of effects.

    A low budget British horror set in medievil times when they used to declare any unwanted wife or daughter as a witch to the local lynch mob as a cheap alternative to divorce. Similar to Witchfinder General, this cult film is pretty stupid, especially some of effects.

  • Jun 11, 2016

    I'd rather give it a 4 but there seems to be a serious amount of scenes missing from the final product for it to really make sense. Chances for a directors cut are void so in the meantime, as it is, it remains fascinating Pagan horror.

    I'd rather give it a 4 but there seems to be a serious amount of scenes missing from the final product for it to really make sense. Chances for a directors cut are void so in the meantime, as it is, it remains fascinating Pagan horror.

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    Sylvester K Super Reviewer
    Apr 09, 2015

    A wicked little film starring a largely unknown cast. Set in the 17th century, a farmer discovered a strange artifact in the filed and the teenagers in the town began to grow furs and become cultists. Bloodier than Witch Hunter General, Blood On Satan's Claw is a rare gem of British cinema.

    A wicked little film starring a largely unknown cast. Set in the 17th century, a farmer discovered a strange artifact in the filed and the teenagers in the town began to grow furs and become cultists. Bloodier than Witch Hunter General, Blood On Satan's Claw is a rare gem of British cinema.

  • Oct 31, 2014

    A great Halloween flick. It's creepy, cringy and dripping with a damp fetid atmosphere. If you're a fan of 1st class 17th century black magic and witchery? Seek this film out.

    A great Halloween flick. It's creepy, cringy and dripping with a damp fetid atmosphere. If you're a fan of 1st class 17th century black magic and witchery? Seek this film out.

  • Oct 26, 2014

    It had an eerie feel about it and a creepy score but overall I found it quiet boring.

    It had an eerie feel about it and a creepy score but overall I found it quiet boring.

  • Oct 12, 2014

    A superb folk horror film. A group of 17th centuary children, led by Linda Hayden (terrific performance), attempt to re-incarnate a demon by use of blood sacrifices(murdering other children). Plenty of suspense. A story that oozes horror. Tamara Ustinov is one of the children, and Michelle Dotrice (Betty in Some Mother's Do Have Them) is another. One of the best horror films ever made.

    A superb folk horror film. A group of 17th centuary children, led by Linda Hayden (terrific performance), attempt to re-incarnate a demon by use of blood sacrifices(murdering other children). Plenty of suspense. A story that oozes horror. Tamara Ustinov is one of the children, and Michelle Dotrice (Betty in Some Mother's Do Have Them) is another. One of the best horror films ever made.

  • Aug 19, 2014

    Eerie horror film where a village is being taken over by devil worshippers. Gory and shocking at times.

    Eerie horror film where a village is being taken over by devil worshippers. Gory and shocking at times.