Mark of the Devil (1969) - Rotten Tomatoes

Mark of the Devil (1969)

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AUDIENCE SCORE

Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

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Movie Info

Released as Mark of the Devil to U.S. theaters (accompanied by complimentary barf-bags for squeamish patrons with urpy tendencies), this gory torture-fest was produced in Germany under the title of Hexen bis aufs Blut Gequält (Witches Tortured Till They Bleed). The story is comprised of equal parts Ken Russell's The Devils and Michael Reeves' sardonic Witchfinder General (aka The Conqueror Worm). It involves the demented Count Cumberland (Herbert Lom), an Austrian nobleman who implements the witch-hunting policies of the Inquisition as a means of obtaining land, riches, and nubile young wenches -- particularly the lovely Vanessa (Olivera Vuco), who has been accused of heresy and witchcraft. Cumberland's accomplice in the torture and terror, Baron Christian Von Mem (Udo Kier), realizes too late that his mentor is the true evil stalking the land, not the terrified innocents whose "trials" are a mockery of justice. Christian is sacrificed to the enraged villagers during the inevitable revolt at the film's climax, while the Count makes a hasty escape -- thus enabling the birth of a sequel, Mark of the Devil Part 2. Both films were repackaged in the mid-70's and released in time to join the ranks of the European demon-possession subgenre (American release ads proudly proclaimed "Damn The Exorcist!"). The barf-bags were not entirely unjustified for this graphically sadistic exercise which assaulted audiences with explicit scenes of torture, including the removal of one poor victim's tongue. ~ Cavett Binion, Rovi
Rating:
R
Genre:
Art House & International , Classics , Cult Movies , Horror
Directed By:
In Theaters:
 wide
On DVD:
Runtime:
Studio:
Cheezy Flicks Entertainment

Cast

Herbert Lom
as Cumberland
Olivera Vuco
as Vanessa
Udo Kier
as Christian
Reggie Nalder
as Albino the witchfinder
Herbert Fux
as Chief Executioner
Show More Cast

Critic Reviews for Mark of the Devil

All Critics (6) | Top Critics (1)

Though the Pioneer is reviving this picture's original barf-bag-at-the-door promo gimmick, there's about a 50 percent chance it'll be more useful to save it for watching the returns on Election Night.

Full Review… | October 19, 2004
Village Voice
Top Critic

The pic lacks the substance that made Michael Reeves' The Conqueror Worm a horror classic, as it too easily settles in to be solely a shocker torture-porn flick.

Full Review… | October 27, 2015
Ozus' World Movie Reviews

An early entry in the "sex and sadism" genre, this is an exploitation film with an intelligence behind it, but an exploitation film nonetheless...

Full Review… | April 25, 2015
Parallax View

Horror fans will want to see this grindhouse classic, and I give it a slight recommendation. It's worth seeing once, but be warned. Have your barf bag handy.

Full Review… | March 27, 2015
Movie Chambers

It's a curiosity alright, but more akin to a Monty Python feature (with its tits out) than to, say, The Devils (1971).

Full Review… | November 9, 2013
Sight and Sound

Audience Reviews for Mark of the Devil

½

This movie was a gross out banned smash hit when it made its way into theaters. And all this without the creepy Vincent Price. Still a young and hunky Udo Kier does manage to bring some gravitas with his steely blue eyes, though as the conscience of the movie, he does not have a lot to do. Olivera Vuco and Ingeborg Schöner really steal the show with their strong but damsely distress. Not to mention the Albino and his sniveling underling who are both so odious they make the bloody torture all that more disgusting.

R.John Xerxes
R.John Xerxes
½

I think I may've liked this more had it been interested in doing anything beyond showing how cruel the witchfinders were in their time, and the asshole actually gets away with it in the end of the film, denying us of the satisfaction of his comeuppance. Knowing where it ends, I might be able to enjoy it more on a re-watch without going into it with the same expectations. Rental?

Bill Bryant
Bill Bryant
½

One of the few exploitation films that takes itself seriously, which in effect gives the sickening gore some purpose, and for its time this film is noble in comparison to later sleaze works. Unfortunately, its efforts have potential only.

Richard Cranium
Richard Cranium

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