Not feeling too well today. I seem to have caught a bit of a cold. I felt better a little bit earlier, but then I took a nap. I swear taking a nap when you are sick is the worst possible thing to do. I feel like total shit. Maybe some Vincent Price will make me feel better. Let’s get this running commentary of House on Haunted Hill started. Spoilers ahead!
Allied Artists Productions. They aren’t my allies. Loud screams already? Evil laughter? My goodness! I can’t even see anything. A head just flew at the screen and he’s introducing himself to me. He seems polite. His brother has been murdered in this haunted house he is going to introduce us to. He says he barely survived it. I’m glad he did so he could sent his flying head at me telling me that he survived. Vincent Price’s head is talking to me now. He’s throwing a haunted house party and he’s even telling me that murders are possible. Oh, he’s offering money if you can stay the whole night. I could see how that is tempting. He says his wife came up with the idea of people arriving in hearses.
Vincent Price is going by the name Frederick Loren and his wife is Annabelle Loren. He’s introducing us to the people in the hearses. First up is Lance who Frederick says could use the money. I’m guessing they could all use the money. Ruth writes columns in the newspapers and ghosts would be fun to write about and she needs money. Ruth also has a gambling problem. Watson is another guy. He’s the flying head from the beginning. He fears the house, but he’s staying again for money. Dr. David Trent is there because ghosts will help his work on hysteria. Frederick believes Trent is probably a little greedy. Nora Manning, great aunt of Peyton, was picked because she worked for Loren. He believed she needed the money the most, and he finds her pretty. She is pretty.
I must mention that Vincent Price has an excellent voice. I’m enjoying the mood and the creepy sounds during the credits. The music has the right amount of spooky. The credits are simple looking, but it works for this film. The house doesn’t seem too scary so far. I think I could stay all night. Small talk between the guests. Nobody has ever met Frederick Loren before. How weird. Oh, a door already shut on its own. A chandelier also fell to the ground. Lance moved Nora out of the way so she wouldn’t be hit by it. In actuality, she wasn’t anywhere close to getting hit by the thing. Mr. Loren is chilling around the house. He’s a creepy, but effective bastard. He’s talking to the wife up in their room. His wife looks better than I thought she was going to look. Maybe I just imagined them as old people. Mr. Loren details to her why he picked out his guests saying he wanted people of many backgrounds that needed money. He didn’t invite any African Americans though. That racist!
The film reminds me of Clue in a way with different people being brought together in a house. Mr. Loren is pretending like he is going to kill his wife with a champagne bottle. I wonder how much these too even like each other lol. They seem to argue a lot but still love each other. He even narrates in front of her that of all his wives she was the least agreeable. Mrs. Loren really seems to want his money when he dies. I guess she tried to poison him once haha. Not sure why these two are still together. Watson is explaining how his brother and his brother’s wives were killed. Hacked to pieces but the heads never found!
Mr. Loren finally introduces himself to the guests. He explains the rules like how there is no way out. The usual stuff. I love the grin of Vincent Price. Everything about him is awesome. He’s like Bela Lugosi in that way. Everyone he says you have to pay attention to. Watson says four men and three women have been killed in the house. Blood dripping from the ceiling. Watson says they have marked Nora. Watson knows a lot about the house. He says about every room has had a murder. The house has a winery where the old owner put his wife into an acid pit that was thought to have wine in it instead. Watson says all the deaths in the house have been of weird circumstances. No shootings or stabbings. The acid pit is still there. Watson tossed a dead animal in to show how it works.
Lance and Nora small talk about why they were invited. They both want that ten thousand dollars. Lance is checking doors. He finds good stuff like closets and bottles of wine. The next door he goes in closes on its own with Lance in wherever that door went! Nora is by herself. OH no! Creepy woman in the shadows! Nora is going to make a run for it! She tells the others that Lance is gone. The door with Lance inside is no longer locked and they find Lance on the ground. Lance believes he bumped his head, but the only thing he could bump his head on was the wall. Watson believes the ghosts hit him. Dr. Trent treated Lance. I guess he’s fine. Watson is telling Loren that the ghosts are coming. I’m not sure how Mr. Loren actually feels about the ghosts. He might be hiding things from them.
Nora and Lance are investigating doors and walls. Lance has Nora knock on a wall and…..JESUS CHRIST!!!! That creepy old lady scared the shit out of me! I wasn’t expecting that at all. She walks like she’s floating. DAMN! Lance runs in and Nora tells him what happened. He doesn’t quite believe her. I do! It scared the piss out of me! Nora runs into Annabelle Loren now. She has a creepy grin just like her husband. Mrs. Loren takes Nora to her room. She wants to know why she was invited. Annabelle warns Nora not to go anywhere in this house by herself. That’s good advice. She then leaves her alone haha. Annabelle runs into Lance next. She asks Lance about what happened with Nora and why he had a bump on his head. She warns Lance about the house too. Lance wants to know why they are there. She says he has a reason. Annabelle tells Lance that all of Mr. Loren’s previous wives are dead or missing along with some doctors and other people. She leaves the room and runs back to her room where Mr. Loren comes in. He tells her about all the great stuff to happen so far. Frederick wonders why he married her again, but he wants her to come downstairs because the party is for her. He threatens her to come down, and he even grabs her by the neck. He’s an asshole!
Mr. Loren knocks on Lance’s door and tells him it is almost midnight so he should come downstairs. He tells Nora too. Nora decides to get ready and she notices a head lying around. Another good scare that got me. A lot of horror films don’t scare me much today, but this one keeps getting me out of nowhere. Nora walks down the hallway and someone grabs her. The person in the shadows warns her to leave. She runs downstairs where the other people are. The doors open and the floating lady and a guy are standing. Mr. Loren says they are the caretakers that have worked there for years. Mrs. Loren comes downstairs with the rest of the guests. Mr. Loren introduces her to everyone. Mr. Loren goes over the money issues next in case people die. Nora really wants to get the fuck out of there.
The caretakers have locked everyone in early this time. They didn’t wait until midnight to lock them inside. They have to stay until eight in the morning. Mr. Loren introduces another twist inside little coffins. Handguns! Everyone gets a handgun! He says this is dangerous, but he gives a demonstration on how to shoot. Watson says guns are no good against the dead, but the living. Mr. Watson makes a good point. Mr. Loren gives his wife a gun and while she originally refuses he offers her the chance to possibly shoot him. I’d keep the gun too for that reason. Nora tells Watson and everybody else about the head in the box she saw. Watson did say his brothers’s head was never found. Mrs. Loren does end up giving up her gun.
Watson checks Nora’s suitcase, but the head is gone. Not surprising. She’s starting to go nuts. Watson believes the spirits are circling her. Mr. Loren thinks Watson is drunk! Dr. Trent asks Mr. Loren if there are more than seven people in the house. Mr. Loren says there are ghosts also. Dr. Trent doesn’t want poor Nora to be frightened anymore. Back in Lance’s room, he knocks on Nora’s door. He goes in her room and Nora is gone. Oh shit! Lance finds a head! He takes the head to Watson. Watson says it’s too late for Nora. They’ve taken her to make her one of them. Not sure why Watson draws a knife on Lance. A scream is heard upstairs and Lance runs upstairs. Nora has hung herself. Dr. Trent and Lance get her body down. We have our first causality. Oh shit!!!!! Swerve!!! It wasn’t Nora. Mrs. Loren committed suicide! Mr. Loren seems displeased by this.
Lance seems to be seeing all the weird shit now. He finds Nora who wants Lance to hide her. She says someone tried to kill her by choking her. Nora accuses Mr. Loren as the person who tried to kill her. Lance tells Nora about Mrs. Loren. He’s not convinced it was a suicide. Dr. Trent tells Lance he wants to discuss what is going on in the house. He believes he has come to a conclusion about what is happening. Lance leaves Nora in the room since they believe that Mr. Loren thinks Nora is dead from the strangling. He tells her to use the gun if necessary. Mr. Loren goes into the room with his dead wife. He calls her beautiful but cold and greedy. Watson was also in the room and Mr. Loren grabs him by the throat. He calls him a drunk again and sends him out of the room. Watson warned him that she’s gone with the ghosts or whatever.
Everyone but Nora is in the main room now. Watson wonders where Nora is, but only Lance knows. They all just assume she is in her room. Mr. Loren asks about the suicide. Mr. Loren says that there is no way she could have committed suicide. He accuses someone in the room of killing her. Dr. Trent thinks Mr. Loren killed her. Someone is wrong here. They could all be wrong. Ghosts could have killed Mrs. Loren. Lance says he is going to stay in his room for the rest of the night. Everyone else agrees to the same. They all have guns after all. We see everyone go in their rooms. There is some tension between everyone. Mr. Loren breaks a glass in his room. He’s not happy. Watson gets his gun ready. Dr. Trent is about to right something when someone tries to open his door. He stupidly opens it and checks to see who did it. Nobody there! Ruth has her gun, but that blood drips on her hands again. Good callback from earlier! Lance knocks on Nora’s door. Nora wonders if Mr. Loren really did try to kill her since it was dark. Nora seems to have a dark smile too. I’m not sure I trust her either! Lance is walking around the house for some odd reason. I guess he wants answers.
Lance finds a hidden door! All great horror houses have hidden doors. Back to Nora’s room.The lights go out and some rope comes in through the window. She is standing still like a moron while it goes around her feet. The ghost of Mrs. Loren is at the window. The ghost decides not to do anything with that rope and leaves. Nora is not having a good time at this house. She runs out of her room and Mrs. Loren is hanging again. Who would hang a dead body twice! What the hell is that! A bear arm!? The piano is playing itself. That’s never a good sign.
Nobody is staying in their rooms very well. Dr. Trent comes to Mr. Loren’s door. Loren has his gun pointed at him, but Trent tells him that someone has left their room already. They split up to go look around the house. They both have their guns ready. Dr. Trent finds Mrs. Loren in the bed again. Oh, she’s not really dead. They’ve been working together! She had a hanging harness on the whole time! They want Nora to kill Mr. Loren. Dr. Trent was the one who attacked Nora in the cellar. Dr. Trent and Mrs. Loren kiss and Dr. Trent leaves the room.
Down in the cellar, Nora has her gun. Mr. Loren better stay the fuck out of the cellar if he doesn’t want to get shot. He did go down to the cellar though and Nora shot him pretty good. Dr. Trent comes in through a secret passage. Oh fuck! He’s opening the acid pit. I know where Mr. Loren’s body is going. Everything just went black! What happened! Who went in the acid pit! Mrs. Loren goes to the cellar to check what happened. The door shuts behind her. All the doors shut for that matter! She’s in trouble now! She checks the acid pit. A skeleton rises out of the pit. Who is the skeleton! The voice of Mr. Loren is talking as the skeleton goes after her. The skeleton effect is kinda funny looking but it works. BAHAHA! The skeleton pushed her into the acid pit. Mr. Loren never fell in the pit though. He was controlling the skeleton like a marionette puppet. Mr. Loren apparently knew what they were up to the whole time.
Nora finds Lance with Watson and Ruth. She tells them she shot Mr. Loren who she believes is dead. They go to the cellar and find him alive. Mr. Loren says he loaded all the guns with blanks. Mr. Loren tells them how Mrs. Loren and Dr. Trent were trying to kill him. He said he would leave it up for them to decide if he was guilty or not. Watson then gives a comical, “they’re coming for me now and then they’re coming for you.” A silly way to end the film, but I can roll with that.
It had good suspense at times. It did get a couple legit scares out of me, so I give the film credit for that. The acting is good across the board. Vincent Price being the standout of course. The music and atmosphere work well. I think some things don’t make sense. Why did all these weird scary things happen? Did Mrs. Loren and Dr. Trent come up with all of it and how did they do it. Was it actually Mr. Loren who did some of that stuff? So a lot of the film comes off as a little hokey. I’m not sure if I liked the ending or not. Maybe I would have preferred ghosts and stuff over Mrs. Loren and Dr. Trent really wanted Mr. Loren dead. That’s just me though. I’d recommend it. It has good moments. It can even be watched for some good laughs too. To sum up the movie: Mr. Loren in the cellar with the acid pit!
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