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The Pit and the Pendulum (+ Digital Copy)

3.5 out of 5 stars 15 customer reviews

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(Aug 02, 2011)
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Editorial Reviews

Under the direction of Torquemada (Golden Globe® nominee Lance Henriksen) the Grand Inquisitor of Spain, a young baker's wife, Maria, is falsely accused of witchcraft and dragged before the Inquisition. Torquemada is enchanted by Maria's beauty and subjects her and her husband Antonio to heinous torture hoping to prove that his own desires are a result of her bewitching powers. With the help of Esmerelda, Maria's cellmate and a confessed witch, Maria must save her husband Antonio from Torquemada's ultimate machine of torture—the razor sharp pendulum poised over the inescapable pit of hell.

Special Features

None.

Product Details

  • Actors: Lance Henriksen, Stephen Lee, William J. Norris, Mark Margolis
  • Directors: Stuart Gordon
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, Full Screen, NTSC, Digital_copy
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: R (Restricted)
  • Studio: Echo Bridge Home Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: August 2, 2011
  • Run Time: 97 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0055SJY2W
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #107,772 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Amazon Video
Sometime marketed under the title "The Inquisitor" this film exposes the Inquisition as a scheme by the church to redistribute the wealth to them. It correctly shows the immodest interrogation of suspected witches. The film centers around old religious debates that exist between Maria (Rona De Ricci) and her world run by the Inquisitor (Lance Henriksen). The film shows how the people relished in the torture of others.

The film was a well done "B" movie in costume, design, and direction. However the script left me a bit empty. If not for the constant stripping of Maria, I would have lost interest.

This film is available on an 8-pack I obtained from Walmart as part of their "Midnight Horror" collection.

Parental Guide: No f-bombs, sex, Full frontal nudity (Rona De Ricci)
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Format: DVD
THE PIT AND THE PENDULUM

As a huge Full Moon Pictures fan and all things Charles Band it should come as no surprise that I own this film and consider it a classic. When this was first released I was so excited about it. Starring Lance Henriksen and Jeffery Combs, written by Dennis Paoli and directed by Stuart Gordon being put out by Full Moon and Band, I was all over it. Thankfully that excitement paid off as I really enjoyed this flick, then and now.

During the Spanish inquisition the man in charge is Torquemada and if he thinks you are a witch then you are tortured and then burned alive. At one such event he notices a woman that he wants but his duties say he cannot be with anyone. So naturally like any good guy he accuses her of witchcraft so she will at least be in the same building with him. She will be tortured of course but he must have her, the only problem is she is married and her husband will stop at nothing to get her out.

This is a wonderful film and one of Full Moon’s best. The story and look of the film are excellent and the acting is top notch. I came for Combs and Lance but the entire cast was great. And frequent collaborators Gordon and Paoli craft another classic in my opinion. The film is dark but has a bit of humor in it and the performances like I mentioned before are excellent. The DVD comes with the great Full Moon Video Zone which is a great behind the scenes look at the film. And this is one of the ones that go in depth and you also get trailers and the like. If you have not seen this and you are fan of any one the people mentioned here I recommend it.
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Hands down my favorite interpretation of this Edgar Allen Poe classic!!! Stuart Gordon cleverly places the story in one of the historically scariest times ever during the Spanish inquisition!!! With historically authentic characters like the grand inquisitor Torinago( please excuse my spelling) Gordon true to form gives us enough comic relief to handle the horror!!! Although the scene in which a dead man is ruled a heretic and exhumed to have his corpse beaten is comically portrayed it doesn't change the sad reality that , that kind of stuff really happened!!! This was actually done to one of the first men to translate the Bible into English!!! The costumes are great as well as the acting! This movie has it all suspense , drama, humor, horror & action!!! The only problem is where in your collection do you place this movie? Period piece? Horror? Comedy? Action Adventure...you decide but if you have never seen it you should give it a try especially if you get it at the same price I did.
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
The movie came quickly and works perfectly, aside from some damage to the case when it arrived. The case was smashed and cracked on one corner, but, personally, not an issue for me. Very happy with the purchase.
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Format: Amazon Video
This movie may have been foiled by its own inspiration. The premise could have had nothing in common with the Poe story aside from a single torture device and, in fact, that's exactly how it plays out. The first two-thirds or so of the film could be called an R-rated fairy-tale version of the Spanish Inquisition--and it's an effective one. The scenes between the inquisitor and Maria, in particular, are powerful and well played. As just about every other reviewer has stated, though, the end of the movie is a dud; and it ends, by necessity, with the pit and the pendulum. If that concept had been dropped and the end of the film developed of its own accord as the first part was, it may very well have been an excellent movie through to the end. Nevertheless, it's worth a Halloween weekend watch if you're looking for something a little more grounded in history than, say, Freddy Krueger.
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Format: Amazon Video
From the jaw-droppingly disturbing opening scene to the insanity that begins about an hour in, this movie truly delivers entertainment. In large part the credit for this should go to the mesmerizing presence of cinematic demigod Lance Henriksen. His Grand Inquisitor is positively seething with internal conflict and this fuels his sadistic quest to vanquish the heretics through any means necessary. The torture and gore had me squealing, but there were also few subtle humorous moments that kept the film from being totally dark. If I could go back in time and pay for this movie instead of getting it for free through Prime Streaming, I would.
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The Pit and the Pendulum (+ Digital Copy)
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