Thursday, June 3, 2010

The House That Screamed (1969)

THE HOUSE THAT SCREAMED is a moody little thriller out of Spain that benefited greatly from the success of PSYCHO like so many other films before it. The girls attending an isolated finishing school find it impossible to leave when several of their fellow classmates are discovered murdered after their attempted escapes from the oppressive institution. HOUSE's elegant settings and key cinematography are both reminiscent of Roger Corman's Poe adaptations crossed with the adolescent nightmares found in Dario Argento's SUSPIRIA. What is most interesting about this film is how the painfully slow pacing is broken up by intense moments of graphic gore that seem to come out of nowhere. These deaths are tastefully shot and are as unexpected as they are bloody, especially considering that the remainder of the film has all of the horror and suspense of Louisa May Alcott's Little Women. It is not that the film was poorly made (quite the opposite, in fact), it is just entirely uneventful but for a few gruesome moments. If nothing else can be taken away from Serrador's film, its twisted and depraved ending will leave a lasting impression on the audience. The limited gore and early Slasher conventions that are established in THE HOUSE THAT SCREAMED are still far ahead of their time, making this a worthwhile venture for Splatter fans.

Rating: 7/10.
Gore: 4/10.
Number of views: 2.

If you like THE HOUSE THAT SCREAMED, check out:
HOUSE OF WHIPCORD, THE WOODS, SUSPIRIA.



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3 comments:

  1. I've always wanted to see this because it stars two of my favorite Spanish horror actresses... Cristina Galbo from LET SLEEPING CORPSES LIE and Maribel Martin from THE BLOOD-SPATTERED BRIDE. I'm definitely gonna be hitting this one up soon. Thanks for reviewing it (and having that Amazon link at the bottom).

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  2. Oh and btw, my word verification for that last comment was: imimmin

    WTF?

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  3. I think you will dig it since you are such a huge fan of LSCL Aaron, each of them have a lengthy introduction before suddenly bursting out with some sweet ass gore. Unfortunately there are no decent looking copies that Im aware of unless they are out of region? The Elvira release looks like a garbage VHS release stretched out to 16:9

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