The House on Haunted Hill, Vincent Price
Perfect flick for all hallows eve, it's good stuff. Good enough to take your mind off the real monsters and terrifying ghouls on the Hill and in the White House:
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 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, All Movie Guide
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