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The Crimson Cult [Boris Karloff, Christopher Lee]


The Crimson Cult (1968), aka. Curse of the Crimson Altar, starring Boris Karloff, Christopher Lee, Mark Eden, Virginia Wetherell, Barbara Steele, Michael Gough

Synopsis of The Crimson Cult

Michael Gough warning Mark Eden
in The Crimson Cult

In The Crimson Cult, Robert Manning is searching for his missing brother. He visits the remote country house where he was last seen. Squire Morley welcomes him to stay for a visit. But Manning feels menace in the air with the legend of Lavinia (Barbara Steele), the Black Witch of Greymarsh, hanging over everything.

Boris Karloff as Professor John Marsh,
expert on witchcraft, in The Crimson Cult

Will the village’s renowned expert on witchcraft, Professor John Marsh (Boris Karloff), be able to shed light on the going-ons? Vernon Sewell (Ghost Ship) directs this nightmarish horror classic based on H.P. Lovecraft’s Dream in the Witch House.

Cast of characters

  • Robert Manning (Mark Eden). The protagonist tracking down his missing brother.
  • Squire Morley (Christopher Lee, Horror Express). He owns Craxted Lodge at Greymarsh. The place where Manning’s brother was last seen.
  • Eve (Virginia Wetherell). Squire Morely’s niece, who first invites Robert to stay at Craxted Lodge while he looks for his brother. She next quickly becomes his love interest.
  • Professor Marshe (Boris Karloff, Black Sabbath). A local occult expert, he tells Robert about a witchcraft cult based around the late Lavinia Morley.
  • Lavinia Morely (Barbara Steele, The Pit and the Pendulum), the Black Witch of Greymarsh. She’s an ancestor of the Squire. Who may be involved with her cult … The long-dead witch, who swore revenge …

Editorial review of The Crimson Cult courtesy of Amazon.com

Lavinia, the Black Witch of Greymarsh,
in The Crimson Cult

Robert Manning (Mark Eden) goes in search of his brother who was last known to have visited the remote house of Craxted Lodge at Greymarsh. Arriving at night, he finds a party is in progress, and he is invited to stay by the niece of the owner of the house, Eve (Virginia Wetherell). But his sleep is restless and strange dreams of ritual sacrifice disturb him.

Enquiring about his brother, he is assured by the house owner Morley (Christopher Lee) that the man is not here. But Manning’s suspicions are aroused further by his nightmarish hallucinations. When Manning learns from occult expert Professor Marshe (Boris Karloff) of a witchcraft cult based around the ancestral Lavinia Morley, the cult, headed by Morley himself, is uncovered. Craxted Lodge is burned to the ground, with Morley being consumed in the flames.


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