Set in a parallel universe in which Shaw Taylor reads the news, Richard Burton plays John Morlar – “the man with the power to create catastrophe”, a writer of terrible yet inexplicably popular books.
Also on board were Lee Remick, and Lino Ventura as Detective Inspector Brunel, a French cop who’s on an official exchange, you understand (not just because the movie was a French co-production).
Morlar uses his telekinetic (now there’s a 70s phrase) powers to cause all sorts of mayhem – He sends his parents over a cliff in a car, sets his school on fire, gets his next-door neighbour to jump out the window because of some bad fish, sends a jumbo jet into a tower block and causes the death of some American astronauts.
The climax comes when ‘Minster Cathedral’ collapses on live TV – “I will bring the whole crumbling edifice down on top of their heads! I tell you!” – as Morlar lies in a hospital bed after a murder attempt (it was Remick).
French bloke rushes to the bedside, pulls out all those wires and stuff, and Morlar is dead. Except – aha . . . he’s not!
With a felt-tip pen, Morlar shakily and significantly writes the name “Windscale” on a bit of paper. (Except that it had already been called Sellafield for about 15 years. But still).
Detective Inspector Brunel