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The Exorcism of Hugh (1972)

Neither the Sea Nor the Sand (original title)
This movie takes place on the Isle of Jersey where a troubled wife has come to sort out the tumult of her life. She encounters a lighthouse-keeper there and they quickly become lovers. ... See full summary »


Fred Burnley


Rosemary Davies (additional dialogue), Gordon Honeycombe (novel) | 1 more credit »

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Complete credited cast:
Susan Hampshire ... Anna Robinson
Frank Finlay ... George Dabernon
Michael Petrovitch ... Hugh Dabernon
Michael Craze ... Collie Delamare
Jack Lambert Jack Lambert ... Dr. Irving
Betty Duncan Betty Duncan ... Mrs. MacKay
David Garth ... Mr. MacKay
Anthony Booth ... Delamare (as Tony Booth)


This movie takes place on the Isle of Jersey where a troubled wife has come to sort out the tumult of her life. She encounters a lighthouse-keeper there and they quickly become lovers. Together they flee to Scotland. One day they are making love on a beach when the lighthouse keeper dies. But that's only the beginning of the story. Written by Ørnås

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


A bizarre story of love, life and death.


R | See all certifications »






Release Date:

November 1972 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

The Exorcism of Hugh See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Mono (Westrex Recording System)


Color (Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Title comes from a quotation:- Neither the sea nor the sand will kill their love, nor the wind take it away from them. See more »


Towards the end of the film, the flowers Collie carries frequently change from being in bloom to not being in bloom. See more »


George Dabernon: When does a man die? Who knows what happens in the moment of death? The soul doesn't die, simply leaves the body. But what if it didn't? If it went on living in a dead body? A prisoner, in a body decaying around it. Is it possible? What is possible?
Anna Robinson: Hugh was not dead.
George Dabernon: If it weren't for you, this would never have happened. He's possessed, isn't he? Possessed by you. You're a witch, trafficking with the Devil. You have conjured an evil spirit into his dead body.
Anna Robinson: My love for him has given him life...
George Dabernon:
Anna Robinson:
George Dabernon:
See more »

Crazy Credits

[epilogue] "Neither the sea nor the sand will kill their love, Nor the wind take it in envy from them...." See more »

Alternate Versions

The UK cinema version was cut by the BBFC to edit a sex scene between Hugh and Anna. The 2008 Odeon DVD is fully uncut. See more »

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User Reviews

Strangely fixating.
29 November 2014 | by lost-in-limboSee all my reviews

A married woman while on vacation falls passionately in love and begins an affair with a lighthouse keeper, only to be left heartbroken when he dies suddenly. However the very next day he turns up on her door-step, in a zombie-like state. Was it her grief that did that? Anyhow she's overly happy, hoping they can rekindle their love. But she soon realises that his body is beginning to decompose and that she must soon decide their fate. Picturesque, slightly disturbing and haunting British Gothic tale of love with a real sense of tragedy and despair. The grotesquely odd story is kind of ambiguous and scratchy in parts, relying on mood (more so then sense), convincing chemistry and a strongly affecting performance by Susan Hampshire. She really does carry it along quite nicely with a real mix of emotions. But the likes of Frank Finlay (especially in his zombie state) and Michael Petrovitch are not being overshadowed. The music was a bit a shamble. Sometimes fitting, other times awkward. The slow pacing is deliberate and some sequences do pack atmosphere (especially when Hampshire's character comes to the realisation they can't be together), but it feels somewhat lukewarm in Fred Burnley's directorial attempt of capturing some sort of brooding realism to this low-key build-up of macabre. It's nicely photographed with the bleak coastal locations adding to the perceptive nature of its story.

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