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Repulsion (1965)

Roman Polanski’s Repulsion was concerned with a repressed young Belgian woman (Catherine Deneuve) whose fear of sex leads her to withdraw into paranoid isolation in an apartment in London’s South Kensington.

She then proceeds to brutally murder her would-be boyfriend (John Fraser) and slash her lecherous landlord (Patrick Wymark) to death with a razor when they attempt to establish contact with her.

We follow her descent into madness through her eyes, from the minutely observed obsession with cracks in the pavement to the terrifying hallucinations which crowd in on her.

repulsion_003

The film’s sense of oppressive decay is symbolised by the image of a foetus-like skinned rabbit stuffed into Deneuve’s handbag.

Repulsion was a lean, finely-etched film, full of powerful images which the British censor, John Trevelyna, left untouched. All in all, one of the most intelligent horror movies ever made, and certainly one of the most frighteningly effective.

repulsion_001Carol Ledoux
Catherine Deneuve
Michael

Ian Hendry
Colin

John Fraser 
Helen Ledoux

Yvonne Furneaux
Landlord

Patrick Wymark repulsion_002
Miss Balch

Renee Houston 
Madame Denise
Valerie Taylor 
John

James Villiers 
Bridget Bishop

Helen Fraser
repulsion_004Reggie
Hugh Futcher
Mrs Rendlesham

Monica Merlin

Director
Roman Polanski