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(Val Guest, 1959)
Release date: 21 June 2021
Standard Edition Blu-ray

A riposte to the criticisms levelled at The Camp on Blood Island, Hammer’s previous war picture, released a year earlier, this stark and often savage examination of how war and conflict can corrupt otherwise good men, Val Guest’s Yesterday’s Enemy is one of the famed studio’s most hard-hitting but underappreciated productions. It posits an impossible moral dilemma – is it ever justifiable to sacrifice a small number of innocent lives in the hope that thousands more will be saved? 

Headed by the formidable Stanley Baker (Hell Drivers, Eve), Yesterday’s Enemy consciously and directly opposed the overwhelmingly patriotic spirit of British war films of the period, and remains a bleak exploration of duty, survival, and the effects of war.

  • High Definition remaster
  • Original mono audio
  • Two presentations of the film: the uncensored UK theatrical version, and the US theatrical version with toned-down dialogue
  • The Guardian Interview with Val Guest (2005, 46 mins): archival audio recording of the celebrated filmmaker in conversation with Jonathan Rigby at London’s National Film Theatre
  • Total War: Inside ‘Yesterday’s Enemy’ (2018, 27 mins): documentary written and directed by Hammer expert Marcus Hearn, narrated by Claire Louise Amias, and featuring film historians Alan Barnes and Jonathan Rigby 
  • Hammer’s Women: Edwina Carroll (2018, 8 mins): critic and author Becky Booth on the popular Burmese-born actress 
  • Stephen Laws Introduces ‘Yesterday’s Enemy’ (2018, 9 mins): appreciation by the acclaimed horror author 
  • New Territory (2018, 13 mins): analysis of the film by British cinema expert Steve Chibnall
  • Frontline Dispatches (2018, 8 mins): second assistant director Hugh Harlow and props chargehand Peter Allchorne recall their time working on the film
  • Original theatrical trailer
  • Image gallery: promotional photography and publicity material
  • New and improved English subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing
BBFC cert: PG
EAN: 5060697921540