Daybill Poster Original Rare Witchfinder General
Witchfinder General is a 1968 British-American horror film directed by Michael Reeves and starring Vincent Price, Ian Ogilvy and Hilary Dwyer. The screenplay was by Reeves and Tom Baker based on Ronald Bassett's novel of the same name. The story details the heavily fictionalised murderous witch-hunting exploits of Matthew Hopkins, a 17th-century English lawyer who claimed to have been appointed as a "Witch Finder General" by Parliament during the English Civil War to root out sorcery and witchcraft. The film was retitled The Conqueror Worm in the United States in an attempt to link it with Roger Corman's earlier series of Edgar Allan Poe-related films starring Price—although this movie has nothing to do with any of Poe's stories, and only briefly alludes to his poem. Director Reeves featured many scenes of intense onscreen torture and violence that were considered unusually sadistic at the time. Upon its theatrical release throughout the spring and summer of 1968, the movie's gruesome content was met with disgust by several film critics in the UK, despite having been extensively censored by the British Board of Film Censors. In the US, the film was shown virtually intact and was a box office success. Witchfinder General eventually developed into a cult film. Over the years, several prominent critics have championed the film. In 2005, the magazine ‘Total Film’ named Witchfinder General the 15th-greatest horror film of all time.