Quarterly Review article on TDRO

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shanedwyer
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Quarterly Review article on TDRO

Post by shanedwyer » Mon 29 Sep, 2014 12:15:12

I came across an article on the screen version of TDRO in an edition of the Quarterly Review. As someone who doesn’t know much about the making of the film, I found it very interesting. I was particularly intrigued to learn that the incantation used by De Richleau to banish the Angel of Death was an 'authentic' one and had been taken from the Bibliotheque d’Arsenal's Grimoire of Arundel, 'a book of ceremonial magic written in the 1600s'. And that this touch of verisimilitude was supplied by Christopher Lee himself, after his having consulted a copy of the grimoire in the British Library.

Quarterly Review 2012

Richard Webster
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Post by Richard Webster » Mon 29 Sep, 2014 16:55:08

Thank you for posting this article. That was good to read. Aside from the very interesting detail about the pentagram incantation that you refer to above, the article also reiterates the critical importance of Christopher Lee in getting this film made. I think TDRO is a terrific film, and Lee is absolutely wonderful in it. Whenever I read the Duke de Richleau's character now, in whatever book, then it's Lee's voice that I hear. I hope to post some lengthier thoughts on this film in The Library in due course.

I was also pleased that the article, apart from rightly drawing attention to Lee's performance, also comments favourably upon that by Charles Gray as Mocata, who I think is the second best thing in this film after Christopher Lee. I'm a huge Charles Gray fan. I think he was the best ever Blofeld, for example, and if there are any other fellow film buffs here, do check out a somewhat obscure but very worthwhile WWII film he made in the late 1960s called "Night of the Generals". Anyway, I love Charles Gray, and I know that his Mocata is somewhat different to the character written by Dennis Wheatley, but I'd actually be so bold as to suggest that the screen version is an improvement. The scene where he presents himself at Cardinal's Folly is possibly my favourite scene in the whole film.

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