Also known as: Land of the Minotaur (alternative title)
Release Date: August 11th, 1976 (London premiere)
Directed by: Kostas Karagiannis
Written by: Arthur Rowe
Music by: Brian Eno
Cast: Donald Pleasence, Peter Cushing, Luan Peters
Poseidon Productions, Getty Pictures Corp., Crown International Pictures, 88 Minutes
Any excuse to see Donald Pleasence and Peter Cushing in the same movie is a valid one, even if the picture isn’t anywhere close to being the best that either man has ever done. Still, The Devil’s Men, also known as Land of the Minotaur, is a pretty cool picture to experience at least once if you’re a fan of occult horror or either of these men.
The film deals with a cult, led by Peter Cushing, that worships this speaking minotaur statue in a tomb. They abduct some people in an effort to sacrifice them and appease their weird god. However, priest Donald Pleasence and some allies have other plans and want to bring the evil cult down.
This goes just about how you’d expect from a low budget, smaller studio horror production from the ’70s. It’s slow at times but the cool stuff is really cool and makes the movie worthwhile. Plus, again, seeing Pleasence and Cushing at odds, it’s a treat.
The film was filmed primarily in Greece, which was visually neat and gave it a different aesthetic than just being another standard British horror production. Greece is a beautiful country with a rich, architectural history. And while I feel like the film didn’t fully utilize the country as well as it could have, it still gives the movie a very different feel with a new level of mystery mixed in.
In the end, I’m glad that I finally got around to seeing this picture. I remember trying to buy it for a couple of years and had a hard time tracking it down in the States without paying a pretty penny for it, which I couldn’t justify at the time. Now, it’s streaming for free.