Cannibal Callout To Come Back

London

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A sweet story from London24 on Saturday: The phrase ‘Mind the gap!’, heard for forty years at Embankment station because of the alarmingly large gap off the train (the platform is curved), played here long after it had been phased out by other stations. The widow of the man who recorded it used to go to Embankment as it was the one place where she could still hear his voice after he died. Transport for London were approached by the widow to see whether she could get a copy, and are planning to restore it at the station so she can still hear it.

If this is just TfL PR it’s a good one; we’ll be listening for it and trying not to think of the movie ‘Death Line’, in which a cannibalistic killer yells the phrase (well, ‘Mind the doors!’) through the tunnels as he slaughters passengers. The film features a hilariously useless cop first seen fishing a teabag from his cup with the end of a dart; an image I nicked for Arthur Bryant in ‘The Casebook of Bryant & May’. And yes, that’s James Cossins about to be murdered and the poster bottom left is exactly what you think it is.

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18 comments on “Cannibal Callout To Come Back”

  1. Ken Murray says:

    This was a fun little movie well remembered in our house specifically because of the “mind the doors” catchphrase. Indeed it always entered my mind with a chuckle, everrytime I heard it on the tube. Actually now you mention Bryant and May in the same context, I think they would have fitted perfectly into the movie as it sounds just their kind of case. Though wasn’t there an American rip-off of this move in the 80/90s?

  2. admin says:

    I think it was a UK movie called ‘Creep’ – like the majority of recent UK films, it wasn’t very good.

  3. Laurel says:

    Wasn’t the detective played by Donald Pleasance? (quick google) Yes! As I remember he transcended his material like nobody’s business.

  4. David Read says:

    The director didn’t really go onto great things…Dead and Buried was good old fashioned gory fun though.

    London Underground has had some good roles in films… An American Werewolf in London, Quatermass and the pit and I seem to remember it popping up in Lifeforce.

  5. Steven Nash says:

    There’s a similar movie from 2008 that gets played a lot on the Horror Channel called Stag Night. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stag_Night

    Death Line is an enjoyable film. Pleasance is very very funny and the Christopher Lee character is so obviously unnecessary that you just know that the only reason he is there is so the producers can add another star name to the poster.

  6. Alan G says:

    Er – I used to be a Northern Line guard and was known for my “Stand clear to the doors” roar.

    And David makes a good point – I was always nervous at Tottenham Court Road – werewolf.

  7. glasgow1975 says:

    The US poster on the Wikipedia page is quite something, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Death_Line
    tho where they got all that pink sheeting is anybody’s guess . . .

  8. Ken Murray says:

    After it’s creative and innovative beginnings, the word British in conjuction with word movie and/or cinema became an anathema to me. Especially from the late 90s (with the odd exception) they became like a Tesco supermarket ‘ownbrand’ version of real food, with an overtly ‘Britpop/New Labour’ quality about them.

  9. Bob Low says:

    I think I have to speak up in defence of ”Creep”-it’s not in the same league as the brilliant ”Deathline”, but it was quite an effective little film if you got the chance to see it in the cinema, and showed a lot of promise on the part of the director, Christopher Smith-promise borne out by the quality of his subsequent films, most recently, ”The Black Death”. While ”Creep” was a little too gleefully nasty in parts, I thought it made an interesting point about the de-humanisation of big city living-and at a time when many of our pro-New Labour social commentators were claiming that we lived in some kind of progressive utopia, it was refershing to see a genre film that had, at its heart, the plight of London’s invisible homeless.

  10. Ralph Williams says:

    Going back even further in time there was a Goon Show parody of “Quatermass And The Pit” in which they excavate what appears to be a haunted red cylinder (with spectral cries of “Mind The Door”) that turns out to be a train abandoned in the last tube strike. The best bit, which is as true today as it ever was:

    Greenslade:
    This is the BBC Home Service.

    Sellers:
    Hold it up to the light – not a brain in sight.

  11. snowy says:

    I nearly wrote about ‘Creep’ yesterday, not the worst film and a nice cameo by Ken Campbell.

    But it was a bit uneven, I can’t decide if Chris Smith is a Director who writes a bit, or a Writer dabbling in film direction. He could probably do either very well, just not at the same time. He seems incapable of trimming his own work, when translating from the page to film.

    After ‘Creep’ came ‘Severence’ nice little ‘Brit’ flick, let down by some of the casting choices, [doubtless forced by chasing funding].

    ‘Black Death’ starts out with a very interesting idea, but then degenerates into some sort of shambling mish-mash of a film.

    And if anyone is ever cast in one of his films, the odds are better than even they will spend part of the shoot in a cage, submerged in cold, dirty water.

  12. Bob Low says:

    Snowy-some interesting comments about Chris Smith. You’re absolutely right about the recurring ”submerged in a cage in cold, dirty water” bit-I hadn’t really thought about it before! A cameo by Ken Campbell will always raise a smile-even if he is about to come to a sticky end. Do you have any views on ”Triangle”? I didn’t think I was going to like it, but I found it genuinely quite disturbing. Even with their faults, I’ve found all of his films so far to be unpredictable, and interesting.

  13. snowy says:

    ‘Triangle’ is a very interesting film right up to the “reveal”, after that it struggles a bit to find a way to escape the trap that it has created for itself.

    My first reaction at the ‘reveal’ was a flashback to an old Dr Who episode, [which I think was from the Tom Baker era]. My second was to be reminded of the Duncan Jones film that uses a similar idea [on a train] with a twist. [I came late to ‘Triangle’].

    Trying to avoid spoilers makes it a bit tricky, but the central gimmick is very easy to get into, and almost impossible to escape out from in a satisfactory way.

    And while the film tries very hard to tie up the ends, the last 10 minutes feel a bit rushed, and quite difficult to fathom out. I had to cheat and look up a plot synopsis to remind me what happens at the finale.

    It seems to be a film that needs to be seen twice to untwist all the tangles, but it doesn’t quite have enough ‘meat’ in the first half to sustain ones attention on a second viewing.

    Despite my apparently lukewarm reaction to his work, Chris Smith definately has talent, but seems to over stretch himself.

    If he wants to take the “auteur” route, he could do worse than to get a script editor in to tighten things up, before he dons the jodpers and picks up the megaphone.

    He has a new film in pre-prod, so let’s hope for the best. I’ll watch it anyway when it comes out on DVD.

    [The world would be a very dull place if we all liked exactly the same thing 🙂 ]

  14. jan says:

    Wot was the film set in the New York subway the G. Del Torro one with the little boy who sees Mr. Funny shoes the giant moth monster that was a good picture. My next favourite underground rail picture after the Donald Pleasance one mentioned above. Wasn’t there a whole book written about a troglodite population that went under London at the time of the first blitz in the first world war or even before that???

  15. David Read says:

    The film you mean was Mimic

  16. Bob Low says:

    Snowy-your point about the central gimmick of ”Triangle” being easy to get into, but difficult to escape out of in a satisfactory way , may well be, perversely, one of the things that made it memorable for me. The film’s very ”unfinished” quality may a result of poor writing, but it added to the feeling I had watching it, of being trapped in a series of recurring nightmares of escalating nastiness,without resolution . I admit that, like you, I had to look up a plot synopsis on-line to try to make some kind of sense of the ending. I look forward to seeing what he does next, because I’m pretty sure it will be interesting, amd may well provoke further debate. It’s quite heartening as well, at this time of re-makes and teeny screamers, to find a genre director whose films are made for people with a fully functioning set of neurons.

    Jan-I think the first film you mention is ”Mimic”, from the late nineties. The second one you mention has me stumped-sounds great, though!

  17. snowy says:

    I had to go for a bit of a dig to find out what Chris Smith’s next project is about, IMdb[amateur] was being a bit coy.

    Snip:-

    “The first stills and new artwork for the super-sized anthology flick Paris I’ll Kill You have made their way online via the flick’s Facebook page, and if you have a mime fetish, you’ll surely be either horrified or delighted! Check ’em out!

    The ten directors are David R. Ellis (Final Destination 2, Snakes on a Plane, Shark Night), Xavier Gens (Frontier(s), The Divide), Joe Dante (Gremlins, Hole 3D), Christian Alvart (Pandorum), Christopher Smith (Black Death, Creep), Paco Plaza ([REC], [REC]2, [REC]3: Genesis), Timo Vuorensola (Macabre), Eron Sheean (Errors of the Human Body), German music video director Joern Heitmann, and duo Bjorn Stein and Mans Marlind (Underworld: Awakening).

    Instinctive Film and Blind Spot Pictures produce. K5 has boarded sales on the anticipated project (in pre-production for over two years now) which imagines Paris in different horror contexts”.

    “Darkness has descended on the city of Romance, and Death is coming for you in the most glorious way imaginable…”

    -:Snip

  18. Bob Low says:

    Snowy-sounds intriguing! Putting such a diverse range of film-makers together is bound to produce something memorable, even if it’s for the wrong reasons.

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