Frederick Loren has invited five strangers to a party of a lifetime. He is offering each of them $10,000 if they can stay the night in a house. But the house is no ordinary house. This house has reputation for murder. Frederick offers them each a gun for protection. They will all arrived in a hearse and will either leave in it $10,000 richer or leave in it dead!
Running Time: 75 Minutes
MPAA Ratings: NR
Horror producer-director William Castle churned out a series of well-made little creepies that used outrageous gimmicks to pull folks into the theaters, and THE HOUSE ON HAUNTED HILL was no exception. At a specified terrifying moment theater owners were supposed to release a full-sized skeleton that would "leap" from the screen and zip over the heads of the audience suspended on an invisible wire. It may have worked the first time, but clever moviegoers soon got wise, waited for the skeleton to appear, and pelted it with candy, prompting theater owners to bring a quick halt to the in-house "special effects" nonsense. Luckily, Castle's films are okay even without the gimmicks. In this one, Vincent Price stars as Frederick Loren, the owner of a haunted mansion who offers $10,000 to anyone dumb enough to attempt spending an entire night there. Price is delightfully hammy as he hands the brave guests little coffins that contain handguns for their protection. While Loren happily tries to scare the wits out of his guests, his wife (Carol Ohmart) and her lover (Alan Marshal) attempt to arrange things so that Frederick will be shot "accidentally" by one of the guests. Silly, but good fun.
Vincent Price plays Frederick Loren, an eccentric millionaire that invites five very different people to a haunted house for a party, and offers them $10,000 if they can stay the night... This film benefits emphatically from the presence of the legendary Vincent Price. As usual, Price gives a commanding performance and completely steals every scene he's in. Price is undoubtedly the star of the show, but he's not the only star in the show;Elisha Cook in particular gives excellent support playing the wimpy owner of the house; much the same character that he played in the Kubrick masterpiece;"The Killing". The rest of the cast is largely made up of unknowns and b-grade actors, but they also all perform to relatively high standards in their respective roles.
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