The Shout

This article is about the British horror film. For the album by Les McCann, see Les McCann Ltd. Plays the Shout. For the live band of the pop singer, see Never Shout Never.
The Shout

Theatrical release poster
Directed by Jerzy Skolimowski
Produced by Jeremy Thomas
Screenplay by Jerzy Skolimowski
Michael Austin
Story by Robert Graves
Starring Alan Bates
John Hurt
Susannah York
Music by Tony Banks
Cinematography Mike Molloy
Edited by Barrie Vince
Distributed by The Rank Organisation
Release dates
  • June 1978 (1978-06) (UK)
Running time
86 minutes
Country United Kingdom
Language English

The Shout is a 1978 British horror film directed by Jerzy Skolimowski, based on a short story by Robert Graves that was adapted for the screen by Michael Austin. The film was the first to be produced by Jeremy Thomas under his Recorded Picture Company banner.


Crossley (Alan Bates), a mysterious travelling man who invades the lives of a young couple, Rachel and Anthony Field (Susannah York and John Hurt). Anthony is a composer, who experiments with sound effects and various electronic sources in his secluded Devon studio. The couple provides hospitality to Bates, but his intentions are gradually revealed as more sinister. He claims he has learned from an Aboriginal shaman how to produce a "terror shout" that can kill anyone who hears it unprotected.



The North Devon coastline, specifically Saunton Sands and Braunton Burrows, was used for the bulk of the location shooting. The church of St Peter in Westleigh Bideford used in church scenes

Producer Jeremy Thomas later remembered his experience making the film:

Because I had a great director, and a quality piece of literature I managed to get a wonderful cast such as John Hurt and Alan Bates. Skolimowski had a sense of shooting style then, this was the second director who I had worked closely with, and it was fascinating watching Skolimowski work. He came from a Polish tradition, the Wajda Film School, he had a different background to other directors I had been working with in the cutting rooms or elsewhere. And it made the film much more creative to me. I saw it more as an artistic endeavour by him.

The film went to Cannes and won the Grand Prix de Jury. We were incredibly lucky and the film was appreciated by the jury. It was a very small festival then, nothing like the Cannes Film Festival of today, it was a small event in a cinema of 800 people or so.[1]

The film's soundtrack is by Michael Rutherford and Tony Banks of the rock band Genesis. The central theme "From the Undertow" features on Banks' album A Curious Feeling.


The film was nominated for the Palme d'Or at the 1978 Cannes Film Festival and received the Grand Prize of the Jury,[2] in a tie with Bye Bye Monkey.

In popular culture


  1. Thomas, Jeremy; Lieberson, Sanford (2006-04-11). ""At the Cutting Edge" – Producer Jeremy Thomas, interviewed by producer Sandy Lieberson". Berlinale Talent Campus. Retrieved 2010-04-03.
  2. "Festival de Cannes: The Shout". Retrieved 2009-05-21.

External links

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