Directed By: Don Chaffey
Screenplay By: Robert B. Hutton, Rosemary Wootten
In Theaters: 7 Nov. 1974
Runtime: 95 minutes
Studio: Tyburn Film Productions
Lana Turner as Carrie Masters
Ralph Bates as David Masters
Trevor Howard as Paul Bellamy
Olga Georges-Picot as Monique Kalfon
Suzan Farmer as Janie Masters
Mark Weavers as Young David
Patrick Allen as Robert Masters
Jennifer Guy as Waitress
Shelagh Fraser as Mrs. Banks
Ronald Howard as Dr. Ross
John Ryan as Gardener
Catherine Brandon as Mrs. Deacon
“Persecution” (also released as “Sheba, The Terror of Sheba” and “The Graveyard”) is a 1974 British psychological horror film directed by Don Chaffey, produced by Kevin Francis and starring Lana Turner, Ralph Bates, Olga Georges-Picot, Trevor Howard and Suzan Farmer.
The film was released in the United States as “Sheba and The Terror of Sheba” and subsequently re-titled “The Graveyard” for VHS release in the 1980s.
The film’s promotional taglines are:
Warning: this film is NOT for the squeamish
The horror of a twisted mind!
Now it’s David’s turn to get even… and he has a very special treat for his mother.
Carrie Masters (Lana Turner) is a crippled, wealthy, bitter woman who takes pleasure in tormenting her young son David (Mark Weavers).
She blames him for her crippled leg and, in bizarre and horrifying ways, exacts her revenge by dominating him.
Years later, a 24-year-old David (Ralph Bates) returns home with his wife Janie (Suzan Farmer) and their newborn child, but he is still subject to his mother’s evil influence.
When she is involved in two terrifying deaths, David’s mind snaps; although he is already mentally twisted by Carrie’s treatment, David becomes completely insane and swears vengeance on his mother for his years of hate and resentment.
Lana Turner plays Carrie Masters.
Once it was done Lana said she should have known better than to make a movie for which she would have to go to the UK, because the weather always upset her mood. Lana thought the world of director Don Chaffey and the script she signed on for changed during production. They went to London in mid-October 1973 and she didn’t return to the USA until 2 days before Christmas. At least co-star and friend Trevor Howard brought a ray of sunshine to the damp location for her. The base for the company was Pinewood Studios, but they filmed at an old rented mansion.
Variety wrote: “Routine playing, for the most part, is an inevitable consequence of the limp story. But under the circumstances, Turner’s performance as the perverted dame of the English manor has reasonable poise. Both she and the story become especially effective in the waning sequences. ”
In the Monthly Film Bulletin, Geoff Brown said of the star: “One can only admire the lady’s fortitude. Even though she is playing a crippled, crazy lady who ages 25 years and dies imitating a cat, she strives to exhibit the same mad dignity of “Portrait In Black” and “Madame X” … Lana Turner apart, there is little of interest.”
So the reviews weren’t really good, but Lana herself drew good notes. On the 28th of Oct. 1975, at the Sitges (Spain) Festival of Horror Films, she won the Silver Carnation Award for best actress for her performance in “Persecution.”
Lana Turner did a lot of movies. She really loved being a moviestar.
Here are the most important films in which she starred. Just click the links for more info, photos and videos.
20 April 1937: A Star Is Born
9 Oct. 1937: They Won’t Forget
24 Oct. 1937: The Great Garrick
1 Jan. 1938: The Adventures of Marco Polo
22 July 1938: Love Finds Andy Hardy
12 Aug. 1938: Rich Man, Poor Girl
9 Dec. 1938: Dramatic School
28 April 1939: Calling Dr. Kildare
18 Aug. 1939: These Glamour Girls
29 Sept. 1939: Dancing Co-Ed
19 April 1940: Two Girls on Broadway
19 July 1940: We Who Are Young
25 April 1941: Ziegfeld Girl
12 Aug. 1941: Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde
2 Oct. 1941: Honky Tonk
18 Febr. 1942: Johnny Eager
27 Aug. 1942: Somewhere I’ll Find You
1 April 1943: Slightly Dangerous
19 Aug. 1943: Du Barry Was A Lady
13 Nov. 1943: The Youngest Profession
23 Aug. 1944: Marriage Is a Private Affair
8 March 1945: Keep Your Powder Dry
1 Oct. 1945: Week-End At The Waldorf
2 May 1946: The Postman Always Rings Twice
5 Nov. 1947 : Green Dolphin Street
1 Nov. 1947: Cass Timberlane
29 April 1948: Homecoming
20 Oct. 1948: The Three Musketeers
1 Sept. 1950: A Life Of Her Own
2 March 1951: Mr. Imperium
5 Sept. 1952: The Merry Widow
25 Dec. 1952: The Bad And The Beautiful
25 Aug. 1953: Latin Lovers
1 May 1954: Flame And The Flesh
7 Sept. 1954: Betrayed
13 May 1955: The Prodigal
4 June 1955: Sea Chase
14 Dec. 1955: The Rains Of Ranchipur
12 Jan. 1956: Diane
13 Dec. 1957: Peyton Place
30 Jan. 1958: The Lady Takes A Flyer
2 May 1958: Another Time, Another Place
30 April 1959: Imitation Of Life
23 June 1960: Portrait In Black
19 July 1961: By Love Possessed
2 Nov. 1961: Bachelor In Paradise
25 Dec. 1962: Who’s Got The Action?
24 Febr. 1965: Love Has Many Faces
27 April 1966: Madame X
30 April 1969: The Big Cube
7 Nov. 1974: Persecution
27 Oct. 1976: Bittersweet Love
31 Oct. 1980: Witches Brew
21 May 1982: Dead Men Don’t Wear Plaid
Sources: Wikipedia, IMDB, Rotten Tomatoes, Lana’s biography “Lana, the Lady, The Legend, The Truth“, “The Films Of Lana Turner” by Lou Valentino and “Lana Turner, The Memories, The Myths and The Movies” by Cheryl Crane.