The ghosts are moving tonight, restless… hungry…In just a moment I’ll show you the only really haunted house in the world.
I have been trying to review this film since the first Horrorfest, but something always seems to gum up the works. This is one of my all time favorite horror films and my favorite Vincent Price film.
Years ago I was at a yard sale, where I found this film, along with: Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1956), The Wolf Man (1941), The Stepford Wives (1975), Rebecca (1940), The Phantom of the Opera (1943), North by Northwest (1959), Family Plot (1976), Lifeboat (1944), The Creature from the Black Lagoon (1954), Notorious (1946), and The Night of the Hunter (1955).
I had never heard of this film, but if it has Vincent Price you know I’m all over it.
Then I watched it and saw it is one of the best horror films ever made, with everything you could want:
So do you dare continue on?
So the film starts off with the scariest opening I have ever seen. All we have is a black screen and screaming from men and women.
Can you imagine hearing that full volume in a darken theater?
I can imagine people were freaking out.
We then are met by Watson Pritchard (Elisha Cook Jr.) who warns us about the house and how we should stay away:
Watson Pritchard:The ghosts are moving tonight, restless… hungry. May I introduce myself? I’m Watson Pritchard. In just a moment I’ll show you the only really haunted house in the world. Since it was built a century ago, seven people, including my brother, have been murdered in it. Since then, I’ve owned the house. I only spent one night then and when they found me in the morning, I… I was almost dead.
We then cut to wealthy businessman Fredrick Loren (Vincent Price). He has rented the House on Haunted Hill for a party,
inviting five people to attend and promising them each $10,000 if they stay the whole night.
As soon as they pull up to the house, strange things begin happening. A chandelier almost kills a guest when it falls,
And another guest gets knocked unconscious,
And it doesn’t stop there. It turns out that all is not happy with the Loren life. Fredrick is angry with his wife as he believes her to be a gold digger and trying to murder him.
Frederick Loren: Do you remember the fun we had when you poisoned me?
Annabelle Loren: [laughs] Something you ate, the doctor said.
Frederick Loren: Yes, arsenic on the rocks…[grabs Annabelle] Annabelle, you’d do it again if you thought you’d get away with it, wouldn’t you?
But Annabelle (Carole Ohmart) says that he is a jealous, crazy psychopath who has already killed three wives and is going to add her to his dead list.
Annabelle Loren: My husband is sometimes insane with jealousy. Nothing matters to him!
Lance Schroeder: Would he hurt you?
Annabelle Loren: He would kill me if he could…You know, of course, that I’m his fourth wife. The first simply disappeared; the other two died…All his doctors said heart attacks. Two girls in their 20s. Lance… I don’t want to join them.
Who is telling the truth? Who is lying? And which is a killer?
We are given the history of the house with its gruesome murders, from beheadings to being thrown in acid.
They are locked in with no way out, one guest is nearly strangled to death, one having a nervous breakdown, and one murdered!
Which one is the killer? Or is it a ghost?
Watch it yourself to find out. I will not ruin the ending of this masterpiece.
To start Horrorfest V from the beginning, go to Who You Gonna Call?: Ghostbusters (1984)
For the previous post, go to That’s What We’re Trying to Find out! We’re Trying to Find Out Who Killed Him, and Where, and With What!: Clue (1985)
For more Vincent Price, go to No Mere Mortal Can Resist the Evil of the Thriller: Thriller (1983)
For more ghosts, go to Night on Bald Mountain: Fantasia (1940)
By the time this posts, I know Horrorfest won’t be finished, so you know what I’ll be doing tonight; but whatever you do I hope you have fun, get candy, and stay safe!