Death Line (Raw Meat)

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91%

TOMATOMETER

Total Count: 11

43%

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User Ratings: 1,712

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Movie Info

Gary Sherman's Death Line is one of those little-seen, long-forgotten 1970s horror films that's still championed by its core of fans. When the film was shown as part of a horror series at Lincoln Center in 2002, director Guillermo Del Toro (The Devil's Backbone) pronounced it one of his all-time favorites. In the film, Patricia (Sharon Gurney) and her American boyfriend, Alex (David Ladd, son of actor/producer Alan Ladd), find an important government official apparently unconscious on the stairs of a London Underground station. By the time they locate a cop to investigate, the body is gone. The sarcastically cynical Inspector Calhoun (Donald Pleasence) and his right-hand man, Rogers (Norman Rossington), take on the case. The culprit turns out to be a deranged man (Hugh Armstrong), the descendent of tunnel workers who were trapped in a cave-in and abandoned by the government at the turn of the century. "The Man" lives in the abandoned tunnel with his mate, "the Woman" (June Turner), and ventures into the Underground proper only to find hapless human victims and bring them back to their decrepit lair for food. When his mate dies, the Man goes in search of another. Put-off by Alex's lack of compassion, Patricia splits up with him, venturing into a train station alone, and before long, she finds herself in the underground hellhole. Christopher Lee makes a cameo appearance as an officious, meddlesome MI5. Much to Sherman's chagrin, his film was re-edited by the producers and released to American grind houses under the title Raw Meat. It was shown in Britain in its original form, under its original title. ~ Josh Ralske, Rovi

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Critic Reviews for Death Line (Raw Meat)

All Critics (11) | Top Critics (1) | Fresh (10) | Rotten (1)

Audience Reviews for Death Line (Raw Meat)

  • Feb 21, 2013
    A decent little gem with hitchcock style camera works and set design. Preposterous yet still managed to be entertaining and creative at it's time. It may have been a bit long with it's dialogues but it really did have some nice make up and actions.
    Sylvester K Super Reviewer
  • Mar 28, 2012
    Some consider this (along with The Wicker Man) some of the best horror to come out of the UK in the 70's. Unfortunately I found the whole a little too cheap and tacky although I appreciated what the director was trying to achieve. The whole conceit was nicked for the more recent 'Creep' but this has an edge to it and a great central performance from Pleasance that that film can't compete with. However there is also plenty of poor acting from the young couple and some dodgy editing and poor camera work. I like the way the director tried to make the villain sympathetic and his cries of 'Mind the gap' through the tunnels are disturbing but the pace brings this film down and the whole thing would have been so much better if Pleasance had been more involved in the action. A shame the whole thing doesn't quite work. There is a nice cameo from Lee and the scene with him and Pleasance makes you wish he's been in more of the film. Not the lost classic others have claimed.
    David S Super Reviewer
  • Jan 22, 2012
    "Raw Meat" ("Death Line" in the UK) has a cult following among horror buffs, but it's hardly top sirloin. The premise is that, back in the 1890's, a cave-in trapped a dozen construction workers far beneath the London streets. The group (which luckily included four women) survived on rats and each other's corpses for generations, but has mutated into a diseased breed that barely qualifies as human. Now, innocent people are disappearing from subway platforms, and it's up to the police and a young, hip couple to discover why. "Raw Meat" is strangely short on action, needs a few more interesting characters and has an implausible final act (wow, these people track as well as any bloodhound). The film does have at least one good jolt, a marvelous Christopher Lee cameo, a fun score of farting synthesizers and one impressive long take (a winding, seven-minute survey of the mutants' decrepit lair). Best of all is Donald Pleasance's droll performance as a cynical detective who would rather be downing some pints than worrying about dank tunnels and rotting bodies. Still, this is hardly essential viewing. Proceed at your own risk, and mind the doors.
    Eric B Super Reviewer
  • Jan 25, 2011
    Silly horror premise is almost entirely sold with a heavy air of portent and tons of atmosphere. Pleasence is sleepwalking through this.
    Steve K Super Reviewer

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