Episode 34: Trespasses (1984)

What do you get when you make a movie based on a popular TV series, shuffle the main characters into supporting roles, and convince Patrick McGoohan to star in it? You end up with Peter Sharp’s Trespasses, a psychological thriller about a young woman (Emma Piper) who runs off to join a commune to the consternation of her puritanical father (McGoohan). Spun-off from the TV cop drama Mortimer’s Patch and co-written by Maurice Gee, it has all the ingredients of a fascinating film. So why does it remain obscure?

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Director: Peter Sharp
Producers: Tom Finlayson, Dean Hill
Screenplay: Maurice Gee, Tom Finlayson
Director of photography: Leon Narbey
Editor: David Coulson
Music: Bernie Allen

Cast:
Fred Wells…Patrick McGoohan
Katie Wells…Emma Piper
Albie Stone…Andy Anderson
Doug Mortimer…Terence Cooper
Stan Gubbins…Frank Whitten
Bob Storey…Don Selwyn
Dave Gilchrist…Sean Duffy

Notes:

  • Trespasses is another one of those films that’s almost impossible to see (legitimately). It was released on VHS in a number of countries, sometimes under the alternate title Omen of Evil, and copies will turn up on auction sites from time to time. As usual, NZ Videos is your first stop for any further information. They provide a link to a website selling bootleg DVD-R’s of the film, but we don’t recommend paying for bootlegs.
  • While Trespasses may be difficult to see, there are two episodes of Mortimer’s Patch available at NZ On Screen. It’s a good old-fashioned cop show with great acting, solid writing, and a calm, deliberate sense of pacing. Hayden recommends checking it out.
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