March 15, 2012

House on Haunted Hill (William Castle, 1959)   3/4

Classic horror films are really something special, they are simple, funny and sometimes quite brilliant. House on Haunted Hill delivers creepy feelings with timely frights and a typical horror score. I’ve always loved horror films that happen in a single place the entire film. Taking place inside of an old mansion that has seen its share of deaths and murders, Frederick Loren (Vincent Price) invite 5 “random” people to come to his wife, Annabelle’s birthday party. If they can survive the night, they will each receive $10,000.

This film is fun and creepy filled with great acting and of course, a charming Vincent Price. It’s fascinating to look at the amount of B-Horror films Price has been in. House on Haunted Hill delivers a simple plot in the beginning but builds off of that to create scares throughout until a surprising ending. These were the type of films that teens loved to go see in the 50 and 60s because they were entertaining and brought on the scares. There is a scene where one of the women is in a dark room and she turns around and there is a old scary women standing there with her arms up in the air. The old lady then very Scooby Doo like, rides out of the room on a track. Of course this is supposed to appear that she is floating and is a ghost but for me creates comic relief after a quick scare. One aspect I noticed about this film (and others from the time) is that when something scary happens, the film allows the audience to almost take in everything then continue on with the film. If something is frightful, it will be at least a couple minutes until another scare.

I wonder how audiences would react if someone created a simple horror film like this today. I feel that it wouldn’t go over very well because the perception of what a horror film is supposed to be has changed so dramatically over the years. These B-movies from the 50s are still really great to watch and make you think how audiences originally reacted to the now funny looking horror.

  1. pearlonaplate reblogged this from lipstickstainedlove and added:
    I adore this movie.
  2. pinchemocosa reblogged this from lipstickstainedlove
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    this is the shitt
  6. rat--queen reblogged this from ladymoriartyinparis and added:
    sick ass movie
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    I remember when i stayed the night at paytons with a few others and we all chose a character from this movie and who...
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  18. porcedex reblogged this from zombiepussyliquor and added:
    YESYESYES. my fucking favorite. vincenttttt i love you.
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  21. vintagenani reblogged this from lipstickstainedlove and added:
    I have this movie
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