Diabólica malicia (1971)

Spain, Italy, UK,
88m (Spain), 95m (UK)
mono, English

A Spanish/Italian/British horror film directed by James Kelley. Andrea Bianchi is credited (as Andrew White) as director on Italian prints.

Plot Summary

The beautiful young bride of a widowed English writer in Spain finds her life made a misery by his 12-year old son who has recently been expelled from school. The child is bright, but vicious, taking great delight in psychologically torturing his new stepmother – or is it all just in the woman's imagination?


Directors: James Kelley; Andrew White [real name: Andrea Bianchi] on Italian prints
Copyright by Leisure Media, Inc. MCMLXXI [1971] [on US prints]
A Leander Films-Leisure Media, Inc. production [on US prints]. An Avco Embassy Pictures release [on US prints]
Executive Producer: Oliver A. Unger
Produced by: Graham Harris; Harry Alan Towers *
Original Screenplay by: Trevor Preston
Directors of Photography: Harry Waxman, Luis Cuadrado
Camera Operators: Ronnie Maasz, Walter Byatt
Film Editor: Nicholas Wentworth
Assistant Editor: Alan Jones
Color by Movielab
Music Composed and Conducted by: Stelvio Cipriani
Sound Recordists: Peter Lodge, Roger Goodall
Sound Editors: John Ireland, Brian Holland
Re-recording Studio: Sound Associates Ltd
Made entirely on location in England and Spain
Location Manager: John Southwood

Mark Lester (Marcus)
Britt Ekland (Elise)
Hardy Kruger (Paul)
Lilli Palmer in the part of Dr Viorne
Harry Andrews (headmaster)
Conchita Montez (Sophie)
Collette Jack (Sarah)
Ricardo Palacios *
Emilio Rodríguez *
Ricardo Valle *

Alternative Titles

Child of the Night
– West German title
Night Child
Night Hair Child
La tua presenza nuda
– Italian title
What the Peeper Saw
– US title
Der Zeuge hinter der Wand
– West German title


Cineinforme no.479 (January 1986) p.23
CinemaTV Today no.10009 (2 December 1972) p.37
Monthly Film Bulletin vol.40 no.468 (January 1973) p.12

Reference Guide to Fantastic Films by Walt Lee p.333 – credits