House On Haunted Hill

House On Haunted Hill

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House On Haunted Hill

Vincent Price, Carol Ohmart, Richard Long, Alan Marshal, Carolyn Craig

A perennial favorite of the "Shock Theatre" TV circuit, House on Haunted Hill stars Vincent Price as sinister gent (you're surprised?) Frederick Loren, who resides in a sinister mansion on a sinister ... read more read more...hill, where seven murders have occurred. He makes a proposal to several strangers, offtering $10,000 to anyone who can last the entire night. Loren festively gives each of his guests a tiny coffin containing a loaded handgun, designed to protect them from the spooks that emerge in the house over the course of the night. The picture hinges on its surprise ending, which packs in several by-now-familiar twists. When originally released to theaters, House on Haunted Hill was accompanied by one of those gimmicks so beloved of producer/director William Castle: the gimmick was "Emergo," and it involved a prop skeleton that "emerged" from the side of the screen at a crucial moment to frighten the audience. Like most of Castle's best films, House didn't really need the gimmick, but its presence added to the fun -- especially when second- and third-time viewers responded to "Emergo" by bombarding the skeleton with popcorn and empty soda bottles. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi

Id: 10896590

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Recent Reviews


  • July 23, 2013
    This amazingly creepy fifties' horror film uses many gimmicks that would go on to make it a blockbuster as well as a television staple. Many of these gimmicks lend to its characterization of being cheesy and a little over the top. The best identifier of this, of course, is the pr... read moreesence and absolutely incomparable performance from the master of ghouls himself, Vincent Price. Price plays a wealthy magnate who invites several strangers to a supposedly haunted mansion for a party that he and his wife are putting on. Each of these five strangers will be willed 10,000 dollars if they can make it until morning, and all they have to do is live to see the sun rise. Many people have died in the house, and in many creepy and disturbing ways. These grotesque ways are oftentimes used to victimize the current guests of the manor, and lead to some great scares, even for a modern day audience. This is surely a classic horror film, while also being a thriller and a story of double cross. While you watch the horrors of the past you're also wondering whether or not these are truly ghosts and monsters or actually just ploys from the feuding husband and wife hosts, who show their contempt for one another at every turn. The guests are mostly throwaway bodies and suspects, except for a young woman and man who try to investigate every event that happens. For a film that is actually quite macabre, there's a sense of mystery and suspense as well, and we watch the twosome split and then come back together to share their progress. The setting is great, the lighting and cinematography is always dark and foreboding, and even for today's audiences this is definitely scary and netherwordly at times. Some truly interesting performances and a great decision to make a woman the lead and not a kidnapped hostage or murder victim.
  • May 26, 2012
    The film gets way too convoluted for it's own good at the end, but it remains a rather timeless campy horror flick. The cast gives generally serviceable performances but Vincent Price inevitably steals the show.
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    October 27, 2011
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    A perfect piece of midnight movie madness. This campy horror flick lead by a sinister Vincent Price won't fail to entertain.
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    October 2, 2011
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    To this day, this film still has what it takes to keep you on edge. Classic.
  • August 4, 2011
    Watson Pritchard: There's been a murder almost everyplace in this house! 

    "See it with somebody with warm hands"

    If I remember correctly, House on Haunted Hill was the first "horror" movie I ever saw when I was probably six. Even then this movie didn't scare me. The movie is hi... read morelarious in that it was once considered scary. Despite not being scary, it's still a really cool movie. It has a very simple premise. A rich man invites strangers to a haunted house with the promise of $10,000 if they make it through the night. 

    What really makes this movie is Vincent Price. Him and Carol Ohmart were in fact the only ones to give good performances in the film. Everyone else was laughable. But the exchanges between Vincent and Carol are awesome. They play an unhappy married couple who in fact hate each other. They both want the other dead, in fact.

    The movie has a crazy amount of gimmicks that were popular among the horror films of the time. None of them really stand out anymore as crazy or "shocking." 

    When it comes down to it this and the original are pretty much the same, in that, they are only worth watching for a cool lead performance. In the remake, Geoffrey Rush gives a very Vincent Price performance. He even sports the mustache. I will say that House on Haunted Hill does boast an extremely cool beginning and a pretty cool ending. The middle gets a little slow, but the runtime helps a lot.
  • November 17, 2010
    Castle sure knows how to make super cheesy horror movies, and this is one of them. The movie has some good actors like Price, who just look like they're having fun with the movie, and the movie is fun, but the ending is disappointing. Overall, pretty good, though.
  • July 6, 2009
    Years ago I bought a collection of old horror dvd's for a couple of dollars from Best Buy. I've watch only one or two out of 50, but the other night I decided to watch House on Haunted Hill. Of course I've seen the more recent version, but surprisingly, this one frightened me muc... read moreh more. It was quite entertaining and although the special effects weren't as good, it had a different kind of scary. Definitely worth a watch if you're into horror movies like me.
  • September 25, 2008
    A very dated movie, but still fun and scary.
  • January 24, 2008
    An impressive-looking and casted late-50's horror flick. It's got a great murder mystery and is filled with devious atmosphere. Some of the characters are over-the-top, but Vincent Price is superb as the wicked haunted house host. There are some nice pay-offs, but it seems to end... read more too quickly. See the richly detailed colorized version if you can get your hands on it.
  • July 23, 2007
    I caught this on TV a few years ago. Unfortunately the "scares" in this are more likely to make you laugh. Vincent Price does give a great performance though.

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