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Short Sharp Shocks Vol. 2 on 2-disc BFI Flipside Blu-ray in October

29 September 2021

After BFI Flipside’s Short Sharp Shocks Vol. 1 became of the BFI’s best-selling Blu-ray releases of 2020, we raided the archives again! Return once more to the heyday of the supporting programme with a second cornucopia of eerie, eccentric and edgy short films.

This strange cinematic journey traverses uncanny stories, twists in the tale, low-budget weirdness, stylish spectacle, peculiar public information, monstrous music and provocative experiment – all with oodles of atmosphere, and in High Definition too. Plus there are new interviews with some of the writers and directors. The films and special features are:

QUIZ-CRIME NO 1 Ronald Haines, 1943
Can you beat master sleuth Detective Inspector Frost at his own game? Take his vintage whodunit test, in the case of the golfing-holiday murder and the affair of the slain showgirl. 

QUIZ-CRIME NO 2 Ronald Haines, 1944
‘Everyone likes a detective story,’ chuckles the Detective Inspector. But can you crack the cases of kidnap in the Soho backstreets and a bloodily botched boarding house murder? 

The public information film takes an eerie turn in this disquieting child-peril frightener crafted to unsettle neglectful post-war parents. 

An insane killer is on the run (Dad’s Army’s John Le Mesurier in an edgy early role) in this weird, torn-from-the-headlines thriller by John Gilling (The Plague of the Zombies).

MINGOLOO Theodore Zichy, 1958
A clockwork dog with a sinister secret haunts the dreams of all who see it. What is the nightmarish answer to its riddle?

Joe Meek-produced rock’n’roll and tasteless Hammer-inspired theatrics collide in a bloodcurdling proto-music video.

A politician (Lennard Pearce, Only Fools and Horses) out to reinstate the death penalty stirs a malignant medieval spirit.

THE DUMB WAITER Robert Bierman, 1979
A woman (Geraldine James, Beast) receives a mysterious phone call, beginning a night of knife-edge terror in this debut shocker from the director of cult favourite Vampire’s Kiss.

HANGMAN David Evans, 1985
Industrial accidents are presented with graphic glee by a mysterious masked executioner, who seems to enjoy his work, in a video nasty-era public information film like no other.

THE MARK OF LILITH Bruna Fionda, Polly Biswas Gladwin, Zachary Nataf 1986
Black lesbian filmmaker Zena becomes involved with Lillia, a white undead wraith in a radical dismantling of the cinematic vampire mythos.

The Blu-ray will be launched with a special screening at BFI Southbank on Wednesday 27 October at 18:10 in NFT1 where The Face of DarknessThe Dumb Waiter and The Mark of Lilith will be shown. See

Short Sharp Shocks Vol. 2

Short Sharp Shocks Vol. 2 will be released as a 2-disc Blu-ray set by the BFI on 25 October 20212 at the RRP of £24.99.


  • Darkness Falls (2021, 43 mins): an interview with The Face of Darkness writer and director Ian FH Lloyd
  • Heads Will Roll (2021, 40 mins): an interview with The Dumb Waiter writer and director Robert Bierman 
  • Making Their Mark (2021, 33 mins): an interview with The Mark of Lilith directors Bruna Fionda, Polly Biswas Gladwin and Zachary Nataf
  • Puttin’ on the Ritzy (2021, 13 mins): Ritzy alumnus Clare Binns celebrates the radical history of the legendary London cinema where The Mark of Lilith was shot
  • Image galleries for The Face of DarknessThe Dumb Waiter and The Mark of Lilith 
  • Newly commissioned sleeve artwork by renowned illustrator Graham Humphreys
  • ***First pressing only*** Illustrated booklet with contributions from filmmakers Ian FH Lloyd and Robert Bierman and other writing from Vic Pratt, William Fowler, Josephine Botting, Jon Dear, Jonathan Rigby and Caroline Champion; notes and credits for each film and for the special features