I saw this in the late 1960's/early 1970's on UK television. It was black and white but that was the only telly my parents had (so it might have been in colour) I don't recall the full plot.

Protagonist arrives at a coastal UK town and runs afoul of a bike gang (some song going "Black Leather, Black Leather, Rock, Rock, Rock" was involved with this sequence).

Anyway he meets a girl but then (not sure) they find a kid who is somewhat odd. Biker gang leader confronts them later and they tell him to feel the boy's cheek, he then says "He's dead, I tell you he's dead" because the kid is so cold.

Various things happen and they find a hidden secret government lab tunnelled inside the cliffs. There are maybe a dozen similar kids held in there, all conditioned to think their life is normal.

I think they help the brats escape but men in radiation suits capture them. Protagonist works it out that the kids are intensively radioactive and have faint mental powers.

Him and his girl have made a getaway with one of these kids in a motor boat, however the kid is dying due to a lack of radiation, (unsure but I think they were meant to be the next humans if a nuclear Armageddon).

An Air Force helicopter settles in behind them as they chug out to sea and I think they were waiting for orders to sink the boat, by now protagonist and girl are very ill themselves with radiation poisoning.

Final scenes are these kids, down in the lab, all shouting for help through pipes and vents. Their one brief freedom has made them realise they're trapped.

I thought it was a sequel to the old 1960 film Village of the Damned but that was Children of the Damned and nothing like this film I remember.

1 Answer 1


I suspect you are looking for the 1963 film, The Damned, also released as These Are the Damned.

Simon Wells, a middle-aged American tourist, is on a boating holiday off the south coast of England. He has recently divorced and left his career as an insurance executive. In Weymouth, he meets 20-year-old Joan, who lures him into a brutal mugging at the hands of King, her brother and his motorbike gang. The next day Joan defies her overprotective brother and joins Simon on his boat.

Simon is willing to forgive and forget; Joan implies that the beating was inevitable after Simon attempted to pick up Joan in a bar. She describes the abuse she suffers from King whenever men show interest in her. Simon urges her to run away with him but she insists upon returning to shore. Their time on the water is observed by a member of King's gang.

That night, Joan and Simon meet at a cliff-top house where they have sex. The house is surrounded by King's gang but the couple escape and reach the relative safety of a nearby military base. They are taken to meet the base commander, a scientist named Bernard. He refuses to discuss his work and deflects their questions with vague threats but Joan and Simon are free to leave.

The couple descend the cliff to the beach, pursued by King. They find a network of caves leading to an underground bunker attached to the military base. Within the caves live nine children, all aged 11, whose skin is cold to the touch. They appear healthy, well-dressed and intelligent but know little about the outside world. Their home is under continuous video surveillance and they are educated via closed circuit television by Bernard, who deflects questions about their purpose and their isolation with promises that they will learn the answers someday. The children are regularly visited by men in radiation protection suits.

Although Bernard is forced to keep the children under watch, he allows them one chamber in the caves without cameras. The children are unaware that their "secret hideout" is known to their captors and they keep there mementos of people that they believe are their parents. The children host Joan, Simon and King in this "secret" room and smuggle food to them. Joan and Simon plan to rescue the children and they pressure King into helping them; the visitors soon feel unwell.

Bernard urges the children to give up their new friends, and reveals his knowledge of their secret place. The children refuse and destroy the surveillance cameras. Bernard sends men in radiation suits but King and Simon overpower them. Simon uses one of their Geiger counters and discovers that the children are radioactive. The intruders lead the children out of the caves but they are ambushed by more men in radiation suits and most of the children are taken back to the bunker.

King grabs one of the boys and escapes in a stolen car. He is overcome by radiation sickness and orders the boy out of the car. The boy is immediately recaptured. King is pursued by a helicopter, loses control of the car and is killed. Joan and Simon escape by boat, but they are also overcome by sickness. A helicopter hovers above as their boat drifts off course; the pilot has orders to destroy it once the occupants are confirmed dead.

Bernard confides in his mistress Freya that he regrets the children now know they are prisoners. They were born radioactive, the result of a nuclear accident. This enables them to be resistant to nuclear fallout and so they will survive the "inevitable" nuclear war to come, according to Bernard. When Freya rejects him and his plan, he kills her. The final scene depicts holiday-goers enjoying the beach, unable to hear the desperate cries of the imprisoned children nearby.

You can find many of these details, including the song you remember, "Black Leather Rock", in the trailer.


Found with a search for film bikers lab radioactive children

  • 1
    Whoa, Oliver Reed! Didn't remember he was in it...there again it's gotta be at least 45 - 50 years since I watched it (I didn't do too bad with remembering the plot)
    – Danny Mc G
    Commented Aug 23, 2019 at 13:19

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