Robert Powell plays the adopted son of Sir Hugo Cunningham (Robert Stephens), a man of science who harbours some morbid preoccupations. Sir Hugo’s goal is to capture the asphyx, a supernatural entity that holds power over an individual's life and death, but Hugo’s compulsion to see his interests fulfilled invites disaster into his home.
The concept is certainly creepy, but a large portion of the film lacks the kind of atmosphere needed to keep it affecting. It’s Peter Newbrook’s only solo directorial credit and despite that earlier criticism he did okay, creating what’s essentially a cautionary tale with some very cruel twists of fate.
2½ perplexing smudges out of 5