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Death Line

Entry updated 21 February 2022. Tagged: Film.

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Film (1972; vt Raw Meat US). K-L Productions. Directed by Gary Sherman. Written by Ceri Jones, from a story by Sherman. Cast includes Hugh Armstrong, Sharon Gurney, David Ladd, Donald Pleasence and Norman Rossington. 87 minutes. Colour.

In the late nineteenth century a group of construction workers building an extension to London's Underground railway system are buried in a cave-in. In the present, late-night travellers at Russell Square tube station are being murdered (and eaten) by, we slowly learn, troglodytic descendants of the entombed workers who have found their way up, and are now supplementing their diet of rats with human meat. What raises this exploitation movie out of the ordinary is its unexpected shift of perspective – the dawning sympathy we are made to feel for the troglodytes (nearly all of whom have died of a leprosy-like disease): they have almost lost the use of language, but are still able to feel grief and love. [PN]

see also: Monster Movies.

further reading

  • Sean Hogan. Death Line (Hornsea, East Yorkshire: PS Publishing/Electric Dreamhouse, 2017) [nonfiction: in the publisher's Midnight Movie Monograph series: hb/Neil Snowdon and David Chatton Barker]


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