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Monday, October 04, 2021

31 DAYS OF HORROR 2021 -Day 4: HAMMER HOUSE OF HORROR "Witching Time" (1980)


I dunno...If a hot and horny ginger witch suddenly turned up at my house, I probably wouldn't have a problem with it...

In rural England of 1980, a lonely film composer realizes his wife is having an affair, but before he can do anything about it an unnaturally localized thunderstorm breaks out, and when it is over an attractive redhead wearing nothing but a medieval shift turns up in the property's horse stable (much to the consternation of the resident horse). She identifies herself as Lucinda Jessop, a 16th century witch who has magicked herself across the centuries and out of being burned at the stake, and she immediately sets about enthralling and sexually enslaving the composer. When the wife returns home, she at first dismisses her husband's tales of a hot redhead who practically fucked him to death as mere fantasies induced by overuse of prescription drugs, but upon seeing the scratches on his back — Lucinda's mark of claim — and witnessing poltergeist-like activity around the house, the battle for the husband is on...

This initial episode of HAMMER HOUSE OF HORROR is a lot of fun, and it appealed to me because I have a fondness for witch stories. It also helps that Lucinda is portrayed by Patricia Quinn, who is best known as Magenta in THE ROCKY HORROR PICTURE SHOW (1975). She's a sexy lady who just exudes an earthy Celtic sensuality, so she was perfectly cast in this role. Plus, she sells the part of a saucy sorceress by merrily parading around nude, which may come as a surprise to those who only know her as Magenta and never saw her hilarious sex ed demo with an equally nekkid John Cleese in MONTY PYTHON'S THE MEANING OF LIFE (1983). That said, she's quite sinister here, and this episode was the perfect way to launch this anthology.

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