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Ken Russell helms this graphic 1971 adaptation of a documented witchcraft case, which took place in France in 1634. Outspoken priest Urbain Grandier (Oliver Reed) finds himself accused of seducing a group of hysterical nuns while in demon form by Mother Superior Sister Jeanne (Vanessa Redgrave), who is obsessed with Grandier & driven into a fit of envy when he marries another woman. With the involvement of charismatic exorcist Father Barre (Michael Gothard), the affair turns into a sordid mass exorcism of the tainted convent. With much controversy surrounding its subject matter of religion combined with violence & sex, many cuts were made to the film in order for it to attain certification.
Ken Russell's controversial film based on the exorcisms of Loudun, The Devils sees Cardinal Richelieu (Christopher Logue) & his entourage seeking to take control of 17th century France - but first they need to get rid of the promiscuous & divisive Urbain Grandier (Olivier Reed), the priest who runs the fortified town that prevents them from exerting total control. Michael Gothard's charismatic witchfinder & exorcist is brought in to gather evidence against the priest, who soon stands accused of the demonic possession of Sister Jeanne (Vanessa Redgrave), whose erotic obsession with him fuels the hysterical fervour that sweeps through the convent. With its bold & brilliant direction by Ken Russell, magnificent performances by Oliver Reed & Vanessa Redgrave, exquisite sets by Derek Jarman, cinematography from David Watkin & sublimely dissonant score by Sir Peter Maxwell Davies, The Devils stands as a profound & sincere commentary on religious hysteria, political persecution & the corrupt marriage of church & state. Finallly available on DVD for the first time, The Devils is presented in the original UK X certificate version with a host of new & exciting extra features.
In seventeenth-century France, a promiscuous & divisive local priest, Urbain Grandier (Oliver Reed), uses his powers to protect the city of Loudon from destruction at the hands of the establishment. Soon, he stands accused of the demonic possession of Sister Jeanne (Vanessa Redgrave), whose erotic obsession with him fuels the hysterical fervour that sweeps through the convent. With its bold & brilliant direction by Ken Russell, magnificent performances by Oliver Reed & Vanessa Redgrave, exquisite Derek Jarman sets & sublimely dissonant score by Sir Peter Maxwell Davies, The Devils stands as a profound & sincere commentary on religious hysteria, political persecution & the corrupt marriage of church & state.
The Devils (2-Disc Special Edition)
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