The Stone Tape (1972)

Run Time - 90 min.  |   Countries - UK  |  
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Peter Brock (Michael Bryant) has assembled a crack electronics team to work on his new project, a revolutionary recording medium that will render everything the Japanese have come up with obsolete. But there's a problem at their newly renovated facility: The crew won't work in the room that was supposed to be used for data storage. Peter and a few of his people go into the room, and discover some old cans of Spam left by the U.S. Army decades earlier, a stone staircase that leads nowhere, and a note which says, "What I want for Christmas is please go away." Peter's computer expert (and former lover), Jill (Jane Asher), is the only member of the team who sees something else -- a woman, dressed in white, standing at the top of the staircase, screaming. Soon the crew realizes that there's some sort of spirit inhabiting the room, and Peter thinks up a clever idea: Suppose the ghost (or whatever it is) is actually a recording of extreme human emotions once felt in the room, which is somehow imbedded in the stones of the room itself. Thinking he may have hit upon his revolutionary recording medium, Peter ignores Jill's qualms and pushes his crew to great lengths, using all sorts of technology, to find a way to manipulate the ghostly image. Written by Nigel Kneale (who wrote the Quatermass films, as well as The Entertainer and Look Back in Anger) and directed by Peter Sasdy, The Stone Tape originally aired on the BBC on Christmas in 1972.