1960 Never Take Sweets from a Stranger

Never Take Sweets from a Stranger – 1960

Alternative Title: Never Take Candy from a Stranger

A Columbia Pictures Corporation presentation of a Hammer Film
Copyright MCMLIV by Hammer Film Productions Ltd. Ltd. All rights reserved
MPAA Approved
RCA Sound System
Produced at Bray Studios

All characters and incidents portrayed, and the names used herewith are ficticious and the similarity to any names, characters or history of any person is entirely accidental and unintentional

Black & White 81 mins


Opening title: This story – like its characters – is fictitious. It is set in Canada. But it could happen anywhere – And it could be true.

Peter Carter meets official resistance when he finds his 9 year old daughter has been the victim of the pedophile patriarch of the town’s most powerful family.
Watch the trailer on YouTube


Music Composed by
Musical Supervisor
Director of Photography
Production Designer
Supervising Editor
Production Manager
Camera Operator
Sound Recordist
Sound Editor
Assistant Director
Wardrobe Mistress
Make Up
Hair Stylist
Associate Producer
Screenplay by
Based on the “Pony Cart” by
Executive Producer
Directed by

Elizabeth Lutyens
John Hollingsworth
Freddie Francis BSc
Bernard Robinson
James Needs
Clifford Parkes
Len Harris
Jock May 
Alfred Cox
Tilly Day
Arthur Cox
John Peverall
Molly Arbuthnot
Roy Ashton
Henry Montsash
Anthony Nelson-Keys
John Hunter
Roger Garis
Michael Carreras
Anthony Hinds
Cyril Frankel


Sally Carter 
Peter Carter 
Clarence Olderby Sr. 
Defence Council 
Clarence Olderby Jr. 
Eunice Kalliduke 
Sylvia Kingsley 
Tom Demarest 
Neal Phillips 
Mrs Demarest 
Jean Carter 
Dr Stevens 
Mrs Olderberry 
Charles Calliduke 
Sam Kingsley 
Mrs Nash 
Sammy Nash 
Foreman of Jury 
Olderberry’s Chauffeur 
Taxi Driver 
Dr Montfort 
1st Policeman 
2nd Policeman 

Gwen Watford
Patrick Allen
Felix Aylmer
Niall MacGinnis
Alison Leggat
Bill Nagy
Michael Gwynn
Budd Knap
MacDonald Parke
Estelle Brody
Helen Horton
Robert Arden
Gaylord Cavallaro
Vera Cook
Janina Faye
Frances Green
James Dryenforth
Hazel Jennings
Cal McCord
Larry O’Connor
Shirley Butler
Michael Hammond
Patricia Markes
Peter Carlisle
Sonia Fox
John Bloomfield
Charles Maunsell
Andre Dakar
Bill Sawyer
Jack Lynn
William Abney
Tom Busby


The twin themes are paedophilia and the sexual abuse of children, and the way in which those with sufficient pull can corrupt and manipulate the legal system to evade responsibility for their actions. The film is regarded as bold and uncompromising for its time in the way in which it handles its subject matter.

There is some mild swearing in the original British ‘Sweets’ prints. It features a line from Patrick Allen’s character around the ten minute mark: “If he touched her, I swear I’ll kill the bastard.” In the US ‘Candy’ prints, the word ‘swine’ is used on the audio instead, also recorded by Allen, although the picture remains the same and he can clearly still be seen to say ‘bastard’.

On its original release, the film made little impact at the box-office and its press was mainly negative. It’s reception prompted Hammer Studios boss James Carreras to later comment: “Message pictures? I tried one – “Never Take Sweets from a Stranger”. Nobody bought it. I’m not an artist, I’m a businessman.

Gwen Watford was a popular English TV actress, this was her only performance for Hammer. 

Patrick Allen also appeared for Hammer in “Captain Clegg” 1962. He had a distinctive, authoritative voice which was familiar across the UK, and was often employed as a narrator. He dubbed Leon Green in Hammer’s “The Devir Rides Out” and was narrator for “The Viking Queen” 1967. His voice was used in many other films and television shows and this led to him starting up his own business, running a very successful recording studio for voice-over work.

Details were complied viewing the actual film. 
Source of viewing copy – The Hammer Graveyard Collection