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      The Sorcerers

      1967 1h 27m Horror List
      100% Tomatometer 13 Reviews 59% Audience Score 250+ Ratings A professor (Boris Karloff) and his wife (Catherine Lacey) can feel the sensations of a mod British teen (Ian Ogilvy) whose mind they control. Read More Read Less

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      The Sorcerers

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      Critics Reviews

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      Variety Staff Variety Boris Karloff brings his familiar adroit horror touch to the role of an aging somewhat nutty ex-stage mesmerist who aims to complete his experiments by dominating the brain of a young subject. Mar 26, 2009 Full Review Alan Morrison Empire Magazine Enjoy it as a simple horror film. Don't try and make it more than that. Rated: 3/5 Dec 30, 2006 Full Review Lizzie Francke Time Out As the Monserrats play audience to their victims' living scenarios, which the couple write to their own perverse specifications, this psychedelic horror film deals with the apparatus of cinema, and it still puts the mind in a spin. Feb 9, 2006 Full Review TV Guide A subtly menacing film given the proper atmosphere by the mere appearance of Karloff. Rated: 3/5 Oct 19, 2016 Full Review MFB Critics Monthly Film Bulletin It is the overall effect that impresses rather than any individual scene or composition, but the "psychedelic experience" is particularly well done, with the victim's face literally disintegrating in blobs of colour. Oct 19, 2016 Full Review Dennis Schwartz Dennis Schwartz Movie Reviews A gem that has gone under the radar and deserves more attention. Rated: A Jan 1, 2013 Full Review Read all reviews

      Audience Reviews

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      Audience Member The original story for this movie came from John Burke, who for the majority of his career wrote the novelizations for movies such as A Hard Day's Night, Dr. Terror's House of Horrors, two volumes of The Hammer Horror Omnibus, Ian Fleming's Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, Moon Zero Two and many more. Director Michael Reeves and his childhood friend Tom Baker — not the scarf-wearer Time Lord — re-wrote the script, including making Boris Karloff's character more sympathetic at the actor's request. Burke only got an idea by credit, but after his death, his estate published a limited edition of the original script, as well as letters and legal documents related to the film. The Sorcerers is very 1967 and I mean that in the best of ways. There are places within the London of this film that feel ancient and shopworn while others feel vibrant and new. The technology seems old and the movie is more than fifty years old, but it still feels like something that could be made today. Dr. Marcus Monserrat (Karloff) has invented a hypnosis-based machine that allows him to control people and feel what they feel. His wife Estelle is part of his experiments and as their device allows them to live the lives of others, a frisson occurs between them. Marcus wants to document and publish his experiments; Estelle wants to live a youth free of consequences through others. She destroys the device, making all of his work meaningless, and asserts herself as the stronger of the twosome. Now that she has complete control of Mike (Ian Ogilvy), she uses the young man to race recklessly, to steal and even to kill. Reeves had only made The She Beast and would only make one more movie, the amazing Witchfinder General, before sadly dying from an accidental overdose at the age of 25. He'd been suffering from insomnia and depression, with a variety of treatments being prescribed to help him. An investigation proved that this was no suicide, just a horrible tragedy. Rated 3 out of 5 stars 02/06/23 Full Review martin a This is a great vintage horror, Catherine Lacey is astounding in this as-is Boris Karloff. The story is about a professor who invents a machine or way to hypnotize someone and then be able to control their thoughts. They do this to a lonely man (Ian Ogilvy) but once he has fallen under the spell they get him to steal a coat, They then thrive on the emotions and sensations, in the end the wife wants more and gets the man to kill and hurt people, tying her husband up to prevent him from stopping her! She also smashes the machine. After trying to kill his best friend and murdering two women, The police are soon after him. It is a great film. Rated 5 out of 5 stars 03/31/23 Full Review Audience Member A Tigon film from 1967 regarding Marcus, a doctor (played by Boris Karloff) who practices hypnosis. His wife Estelle is also part of his practice as they search for a suitable subject for their experiments. Step forward swinging 60's hip-cat Mike Roscoe (played by future Saint Ian Ogilvy) who Marcus picks up in a Wimpy bar (it sounds well dodgy, eh?!) Roscoe follows Marcus back to his house and his hypnosis machine whilst being promised good times with no consequence before Marcus uses the machine on him. After undergoing the hypnosis machine (this sequence is very aesthetically pleasing. Think of the inner sleeve portraits of the band from The Velvet Underground and Nico album with the projectiles of dots over their faces and you're almost there) we learn that Marcus and his wife are able to experience whatever Mike is experiencing (but this is a double-edged sword as any physical injuries that Mike sustains will also be inflicted on the couple) with the pair being able to influence this by planting thoughts in Mike's mind to force him to do whatever they wish. But with such an ability to control someone's life there comes great responsibility and you will learn the controller's true intentions and characters. Marcus becomes almost like an angel on Mike's shoulder whilst his wife Estelle becomes the opposite and it isn't long before she's forcing him to beat up and even murder those around him. She even destroys the hypnosis machine when Marcus suggest deprogramming Mike's current mentally malleable state.  This film is terrific but I knew it would be as it's directed by Michael Reeves who made the similarly amazing Witchfinder General (aka The Conqueror Worm in the States). A fantastic premise, engaging characters but also very poignant as London life in the 60's is captured beautifully from the 'new' of the hip clubs Mike resides in through to the 'old' of the streets, pubs and newsagents of everyday life. This film is like a time capsule and photographed handsomely.  The cast are uniformly brilliant but it's the covertly evil Estelle, the Lady Macbeth of the film who steals the show. Her performance is astonishing as her face and eyes seemingly mutate and become more evil as her character does.  A classic. Rated 4.5 out of 5 stars 02/19/23 Full Review dave j Elderly couple of Professor Marcus (Boris Karloff) and Estelle (Catherine Lacey) Monserrat test out their new machine that has the ability to control a person's mind from a distance. Rated 1.5 out of 5 stars 03/30/23 Full Review Audience Member I'll have my fun without you. Professor Montserrat has developed a form of hypnotism that allows him to control people's minds. His wife is also a professional hypnotist and they have contests to see how well they can control people and what terrible things they can make them do. These efforts take a toll on their bodies. "You enjoyed it, didn't you?" Michael Reeves, director of She Beast, The Conqueror Worm, and Castle of the Living Dead, delivers The Sorcerers. The storyline for this picture is very mediocre and felt like an excuse to make a Boris Karloff movie at the end of his career. The acting was okay and the cast includes Karloff, Ian Ogilvy, Catherine Lacey, and Elizabeth Ercy. "He's responding appropriately." I came across this on Turner Classic Movies (TCM) and had to DVR this old school horror picture. This was very average and nothing special but I enjoyed watching Karloff in this picture, even if he was older and less of a main character than we're used to seeing. I only recommend seeing this if you're a fan of the genre. Grade: C- Rated 2 out of 5 stars 01/19/23 Full Review Audience Member Director/co-writer Michael Reeves has a bit of a cult following, with only three films as director and one more where he did uncredited work. This was his second credited film and it's a low budget horror flick that has horror icon Boris Karloff as a hypnotist who along with his wife, Catherine Lacey, seek out a despondent youth in swinging 60s London to try out their mind control experiment. It's an interesting idea that's not quite fully realized, but there are some seeds here of smart ideas and interesting visuals that show the talent director of Reeves, which would later come to full fruition with his follow up film, "The Conqueror Worm" AKA Witchfinder General. Co-Written by Tom Baker (not the Doctor Who actor) also co-wrote "Witchfinder General" so that's may also have contributed to the continuity between these two films. Not a great film and not for all tastes, but an interesting film none the less. Rated 3.5 out of 5 stars 01/31/23 Full Review Read all reviews Post a rating

      Cast & Crew

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      Movie Info

      Synopsis A professor (Boris Karloff) and his wife (Catherine Lacey) can feel the sensations of a mod British teen (Ian Ogilvy) whose mind they control.
      Michael Reeves
      Arnold L. Miller
      Michael Reeves, Tom Baker
      Production Co
      Tigon Pictures
      Original Language
      Release Date (Streaming)
      Mar 11, 2017
      1h 27m
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