This military project seems to be a failure because of a high mortality among the children. The children were genetically engineered to survive a nuclear war, and, as a result, they are radioactive enough to kill anyone who comes in close contact with them. The film was made in May—June 1961 but was not released in Britain until 1963. The film went over budget by £25,000. They are rescued by a group of children and taken to their subterranean shelter, in which they have lived all their lives. Any reflections about returning the article's main title header to? Had Bernard's plan not been interrupted they would have inherited an uninhabited wasteland, but after their brief minutes of impossible freedom they will remember the world was once different when and not if, such is mankind's destructive- ness as embodied by the adults they leave their underground prison. This one is perhaps the bleakest of the lot, because once you know the nature of their situation, you know there is little chance of rescue, and that doom will follow in the footsteps of anyone who comes into contact with them.
They appear healthy, well-dressed, and intelligent, but know little about the outside world. Within the caves live nine children, all aged 11, whose skin is cold to the touch. The Damned is more than a bog standard piece of science-fiction drama; it is an insightful reflection of the mores and concerns of 1960s Britain, made at a time when the world was never closer to nuclear obliteration. There are some similarities with an earlier British sci-fi film, 1960 , although here the children are the innocent victims of human fear rather than a malign threat from outer space. A British poster can be found , which also depicts The Damned. Simon is willing to forgive the prior incident, and Joan implies that the beating was inevitable after Simon attempted to pick up Joan in a bar.
Such strong visual contrasts are found throughout These Are the Damned. It is the haunting look Losey creates for the movie that gives the film its thematic gravity and visual urgency. They are taken to meet the base commander, a scientist named Bernard. Losey was reluctant to direct the film, mainly because he had next to no interest in science-fiction and had difficulty making sense of the novel on which the film was to be based. Perhaps if Losey had had greater creative control over the film, and certainly the services of a better scriptwriter, The Damned could well have been one of his best works, rather than a curious footnote in an impressive career.
They were born radioactive, the result of a nuclear accident. Within the caves live nine children, all aged 11, whose skin is cold to the touch. Anonymous I've seen this movie twice, at age 11 and 21, and it still haunts me. King grabs one of the boys and escapes in a stolen car. Bernard sends men in radiation suits but King and Simon overpower them.
One thing that distinguishes These Are the Damned from typical Hammer fare is the attention paid to the visual element of the film. It turns out she is acting as bait to lure gullible male tourists into being robbed by a gang of motorcycle thugs led by her sadistic brother, King Oliver Reed. A helicopter hovers above as their boat drifts off course; the pilot has orders to destroy it once the occupants are confirmed dead. That night, Joan and Simon meet at a cliff-top house where they have sex. When Joan and Simon learn that the children are the subjects of some top secret military project, they are appalled and resolve to help them escape. Although Bernard is forced to keep the children under constant watch, he allows them one chamber in the caves without cameras. But soon afterward she jumps to the victim's boat to escape her brother's incestuous jealousy.
Joan eventually tracks Simon down in hopes of winning his forgiveness, but another run-in with King causes Simon and Joan to discover a cave that holds a terrible secret: a group of strange, cold-blooded children who were the products of one of Bernard's experiments gone wrong. Their time on the water is observed by a member of King's gang. The open-air scenes of sea, sky, and meadows and The Bird House, built right into the cliff so that its whitewashed walls and grass-covered roof seem almost a natural extension of the landscape, form striking counterpoints to the futuristic underground dormitory excavated deep in the cliff face where the children live, deprived not only of natural light and air, but of any direct human contact except with one another. That this is going to be no ordinary Hammer horror film is apparent from the opening shots. Film Synopsis A retired American, Simon Wells, is enjoying a yachting holiday in a small English seaside town when he is set upon by a group of teddy boys, led by an aggressive young man named King. Losey's use of wide-angle shots, which make the best of the wide-screen aspect, capture the bleakness of the coastal location, bringing a dark lyrical quality. Part romance, part thriller, part teen alienation picture, part nuclear age angst movie, part government conspiracy paranoia, part science fiction—the film synthesizes elements from all these genres into a unique form that defies categorization.
They are told that they are on a space ship moving toward the earth, which they should eventually colonize. The film begins with a gang of terrorising bikers not too terrorising in Weymouth, led by Oliver Reed and evolves into a sinister plot involving Government experiments on children. Unfortunately, much of this dissipates in the second half, as the plot takes over and realism gives way to sci-fi cliché. Later as Simon, recovered from the attack, leaves Weymouth in his boat, he reconnects with Joan, now fleeing from the possessive brother who seems to have an unhealthy obsession with her sex life. Joan and Simon escape by boat, but they are also overcome by sickness. Although Bernard is forced to keep the children under watch, he allows them one chamber in the caves without cameras.
Like many Hammer horror films, especially those with a modern setting, it deals with outsiders who find themselves enmeshed in the peculiar goings-on in a strange place where they have just arrived. The final scene depicts holiday-goers enjoying the beach, unable to hear the desperate cries of the imprisoned children nearby. Hallenbeck, British Cult Cinema: Hammer Fantasy and Sci-Fi, Hemlock Books 2011 p. The film is particularly strong in its first half, and evokes the kind of subtle doom-laden mood that we find in Hitchcock's 1963. Bernard urges the children to give up their new friends, and reveals his knowledge of their secret place. When the two lovers realize the children are being held against their will, they determine to help the children escape. Admittedly, though the featured sculptures depict some of her preferred themes, like birds and monumental male nudes; their execution is quite unlike her mature style, more resembling.