This introductory chapter provides an overview of Joseph Losey's sci-fi film The Damned (1963). The film's reputation has undoubtedly risen because of its historical interest, as 1960s culture continues to exert a fascination for cultural writers and consumers. The Damned was made on the cusp of the 1060s, and it exists in a fold between one era and another. In various strands of cinema history, too, The Damned has become a useful case study. This book attempts to set The Damned in context, or in a series of contexts: as a Joseph Losey film, as a Hammer film, as a science fiction film, as a product of the Cold War and the atmosphere of atomic terror that prevailed at the time. It also examines the film's treatment of stock figures such as the scientist, the child, the artist, and the 'yob', and its experiments with imagery and ideas of living and non-living.
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