The Skull

The Skull

Freddie Francis (1965)

X Certificate


Our Score
Horror stars Peter Cushing and Christopher Lee, plus Patrick Wymark and Jill Bennett, are strongly cast in Freddie Francis's disappointing adaptation of Psycho author Robert Bloch's story about the strange properties of the Marquis de Sade's skull. There are some good moments and impressive special effects, though, while Francis's direction has panache. The veteran Francis, better known as a distinguished cinematographer (The French Lieutenant's Woman and The Elephant Man), directed other horror movies including The Evil of Frankenstein, Dracula Has Risen from the Grave and Tales from the Crypt. The film's original title The Skull of the Marquis de Sade had to be changed when the French descendants of the Marquis complained.


The skull of the Marquis de Sade has been taken from its grave, bringing terror to those who own it. Demonologist Christopher Maitland (Peter Cushing) is eager to add the piece to his occult collection. Despite the warnings of a friend (Christopher Lee), he's got to have it. And does he ever get it.

Cast & Crew

Professor Christopher Maitland Peter Cushing
Marco Patrick Wymark
Sir Matthew Phillips Christopher Lee
Jane Maitland Jill Bennett
Inspector Wilson Nigel Green
Auctioneer Michael Gough
Dr Londe George Coulouris
Police doctor Patrick Magee
Director Freddie Francis
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Other Information

Language: EnglishColourTheatrical distributor: Paramount Film Service LtdAvailable on: DVD and Blu-ray