Blood on Satan's Claw


by Tuna

This film is often called one of the better Hammer horror offerings. I have a minor quibble with that -  it is not a Hammer film! It was produced by a Hammer wannabe called Tigon films, and was directed by Piers Haggard, the founder of the British Director's Guild and the grandson of the legendary H. Rider Haggard ("She"). Piers is still active as a director to this day.

Blood on Satan's Claw was released for a week in the UK as Devil's Touch, and then withdrawn and released under its current name. It was circulated on the drive-in circuit in the USA as Satan's Skin.  Set in the 17th century English countryside, it concerns a village which reverts to a belief in witchcraft when a demon possesses several local children, making them his slave.

It all starts when a young man is plowing, and unearths a partial and decomposing demon. He runs to tell a judge who is staying at his master's house, but by the time they return, it is gone. We soon see why. Luscious 18 year old Angel (Linda Hayden) has taken it and assumed the role of Satan's High Priestess. The plan is simple. The demon needs body parts, so Angel's group are drafted as hosts to grow what he needs.

The English countryside has never looked lovelier, the period details are spot on, and the plot is unique. It is especially chilling to have children as the villains.  Highlights include Linda Hayden stripping in an attempt to seduce the parson, the rape of Wendy Padbury before they kill her to harvest the "Satan's Skin" she was growing, some surgery to remove Satan's Skin from a fully awake girl, and a large-breasted Diane Andrews dancing topless in front of a fire with a knife. 

This is a very good horror film in the Hammer tradition.

Our Grade:

If you are not familiar with our grading system, you need to read the explanation, because the grading is not linear. For example, by our definition, a C is solid and a C+ is a VERY good movie. There are very few Bs and As. Based on our descriptive system, this film is a:


Vintage horror!


  • See the main commentary, paragraph four.


There are no online reviews from major critics, but there are dozens of reviews from genre sites linked from IMDb





6.0 IMDB summary (of 10)

(5.2 from the top 1000 voters.)


Blood on Satan's Claw (1970)

This version originates in Germany and is titled In den Krallen des Hexenjaegers, but is a friendly all-region DVD with audio in either German or English. It also includes an informative commentary by the cast and crew.

Since the only other version available is a Region 2 PAL disc priced no less than $45.99 at Amazon marketplace, the price for the German edition is very attractive. Click on the image for details.