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Topic: The Old Dark House

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In the News (Tue 18 Jun 19)

  MYSTERY!: Old Dark Houses
When he tells us we couldn't walk by the house "without passing through the shadow of that weather-beaten edifice," he was delivering the same message as Poe and Le Fanu: Old houses seem to soak up evil.
It popularized the notion of the old dark house filled with secret corridors, hidden panels, spiral staircases -- and hooded killers, who usually were after overnight guests whose car had broken down during a rainstorm.
Manderley was the old dark house where the heroine came to feel the unwelcome presence of her husband's former wife.
www.pbs.org /wgbh/mystery/essays/darkhouses.html   (1070 words)

 The Old Dark House (1932)
The Old Dark House is a gripping mix of suspense and macabre fl humor.
The butler (played by the legendary Boris Karloff) is a dumb, scar-faced drunk; the lady of the house is deaf and aggressive and her brother speaks with an incomprehensible accent.
The Old Dark House is one of the lesser-known classic Universal horror movies, which is quite a shame.
www.imdb.com /title/tt0023293   (544 words)

 The Cat and the Canary   (Site not responding. Last check: )
What insues then is a long night in an old dark house, with bad omens, the threat of escaped lunatics, ghosts, secret passages, and scheming by the snubbed relatives.
For some reason or other, a group of eccentrics is gathered together in an old dark house, filled with phantoms and cobwebs, and soon the personalities and atmosphere begin working to create a fever pitch of fear and lunacy until the jig is up and the ne'erdowell revealled.
The use of light and dark in the film is striking, as well as it's innovative use of the camera, including many wonderful fade outs and double exposures.
silentmoviemonsters.tripod.com /catandcanary.html   (702 words)

 Weird Wild Realm Reviews: Old Dark House, etc.
It's a wonder that Old Dark House is by comparison little known, though it certainly has a high reputation among fans of Universal horror.
Old Dark House was inspired at least in part by a classic silent film The Cat & the Canary (1927), originally a stage melodrama by John Willard, which became one of the most influential films of all time.
The continously jokey b-mystery then moves to the Old Dark House for almost all the rest of the story, except for the sequence when Trayne & his new gal go visit an even darker Old Dark House which was rumored to have been turned into a mental asylum though it seems to be abandoned.
www.weirdwildrealm.com /f-olddarkhouse.html   (1339 words)

 Darcy's Book of the Month: The Old Dark House
Having an old tramp telling 30 year old teenagers not to go up to the old house/holiday camp/lake/American South, is easier than evoking a feeling of unease by having Dwight Frye look at you funny (and only the first season of Scooby Doo counts.
Dusty libraries and houses where giant curtains billow in the wind are Sala's playground and I can just see him lugging a curiously shaped sack over his shoulder and taking it down to the docks or strange professor who never leaves his crumbling watch-tower.
Creepy, old dark house movies have never had such a better champion, hard to believe he lives in sunny California.
www.sarahow.co.uk /dbw.html_/2004/01/old-dark-house.html   (661 words)

 DVDFILE.COM: The Old Dark House review
First, Gloria Stuart did a commentary track for the laserdisc release a few years ago, which was supposedly the conduit for James Cameron to consider her for the part of the elder Rose in the "not accounting for inflation" biggest moneymaking film of all time, Titanic.
Second, The Old Dark House was directed by James Whale, the subject of the recent film Gods and Monsters.
The house is occupied by Horace Femm (Elspeth Dudgeon) and his sister Rebecca (Eva Moore), who are both quite reluctant to accommodate the stranded visitors for the night.
www.dvdfile.com /software/review/dvd-video/olddarkhouse.htm   (929 words)

 allmovie ((( The Old Dark House > Overview )))
Normally, that would be the whole story-except that the old dark house houses a deep dark secret involving 101-year-old Sir Roderick Femm (played by "John Dudgeon", actually an actress named Elspeth Dudgeon) and pyromaniac Saul Femm (Brember Wills).
Directed with sinister verve by James Whale and brimming with unforgettable dialogue, The Old Dark House is one of the most enjoyable and least formularized of the Universal "scare" pictures of the early 1930s.
Long thought lost, The Old Dark House was rediscovered in the early 1970s; copyright problems with the lukewarm 1963 remake kept it off television until 1994, at which time a sparkling new print was struck, replacing the washed-out dupes with which film buffs were all too familiar.
www.allmovie.com /cg/avg.dll?p=avg&sql=1:36123   (304 words)

 New York State Writers Institute - The Old Dark House Film Notes   (Site not responding. Last check: )
The Old Dark House is like that, too: a house of horrors on the outside, but a collection of inviting eccentricities on the inside.
The Old Dark House is as screwy as horror can get and still chill your blood to ice water with its ghoulish faces in the mirror, candlelit hallways, and raging storms just outside the windows.
Whale was gay, and the rain-beaten house and its sullen prisoners are, for him, a Grand Hotel of the repressive habits of conventional heterosexuality.
www.albany.edu /writers-inst/fnf04n6.html   (821 words)

 Font-Finder.com :: The Old Dark House
Interestingly, CCF was published the same year The Old Dark House was released, so who knows whether Gibbons was influenced by it.
Comment: Not only is there an OLD DARK HOUSE, there's also a dark and stormy night outside said house, a heavy rain that causes mud slides and has turned the roads into quagmires.
HOUSE lacks BRIDE'S humanity, there are no noble monsters in this one, but its comedy is more finely honed and definitely of a darker hue.
www.font-finder.com /book-store/index.php?Operation=ItemLookup&ItemId=B00000ILEU   (1522 words)

 The Old Dark House (1932) | Classic-Horror
Funny, frightening, and fabulous, this movie is the first and best of the “dark secret in the attic of the old creepy house” movies.
Starring Boris Karloff and directed by James Whale, it‘s pretty easy to see why this movie is the cult hit that it is. With a whopping ten main characters and a low budget, this film could have easily been a catastrophe.
The Old Dark House always seems to come up, and will continue to be mentioned for years to come.
classic-horror.com /reviews/old_dark_house_1932   (591 words)

 The Old Dark House (1963)
The rating on IMDb for 'The Old Dark House' (1963) simply is not an accurate assessment of this films quality in my opinion.
The storyline is entertaining throughout and the comedy does not seem forced but instead works as a light-hearted diversion from what was actually an interesting and slightly complex plot.
While not really delivering any scares 'The Old Dark House' delivers entertainment and is certainly worth watching in my opinion.
www.imdb.com /title/tt0057379   (597 words)

 The Old Dark House
Interestingly, “The Old Dark House” is a film that will undoubtedly disappoint most viewers who see the film for the first time.
Nevertheless, “The Old Dark House” is a very aesthetic and cinematic film and every picture, ever camera angle, every light has been placed and chosen for a purpose.
Ernest Thesiger and Eva Moore as the house owners are brilliantly played and presented with dark edges in their personalities emphasizing their dark humor.
www.dvdreview.com /html/the_old_dark_house.html   (1396 words)

 Cinemaslave reviews Old Dark House, The (1932)
The first thing you'll notice about "The Old Dark House" is how damn funny it is. I shamefully put off watching this film for ages, sure that it would be little more than an anachronistic throwback to the cornball schlock of a bygone era...
"The Old Dark House" is one of the most entertaining films I've seen in months, filled as it is with (intentionally) hilarious dialogue, gleefully campy performances, and a wicked sense of mischief that never dissipates.
Kino's DVD edition of "The Old Dark House" presents the film in a fair transfer that reveals moderate damage to the source print, but considering the movie was believed lost for many years (with the only existing print literally found decomposing on a shelf), this is not surprising.
www.cinemaslave.com /reviews.php?topic_id=506   (802 words)

 The Old Dark House (1932): A History of Horror
The Old Dark House has always stood apart from the other "horror" films made under the aegis of Carl Laemmle between the years 1931 and 1936.
In the end, The Old Dark House contains some of his most cinematic moments, including one dazzling sequence in which Gloria Stuart is flamboyantly intercut with the remembered madness of Eva Moore--distorted and cackling in the shards of a broken mirror.
When The Old Dark House was previewed in early July 1932, the Hollywood Filmograph published a blisteringly negative review, perhaps a lingering aftershock to the widespread outrage accorded the release of Tod Browning's Freaks a few months earlier.
eric.b.olsen.tripod.com /odhouse.html   (1015 words)

 VH1.com : Movies : Movie : The Old Dark House : Review
The least successful of this quartet of fright classics, The Old Dark House came to be reconsidered a cult gem, part of the renewal of interest in Whale's talents many years after his creative peak.
Harrington's heroics complete, The Old Dark House was seen once again in its original form after many years of speculation based on recollections of those who had seen the original, some beautiful set stills that had become popular collectibles, and European critics who had viewed post-WWII prints.
On hearing it, director James Cameron first thought of casting her in the pivotal role of Old Rose in his upcoming film Titanic (1997), for which Stuart was nominated for a Best Supporting Actress Oscar, 65 years after The Old Dark House.
www.vh1.com /movies/movie/25556/review.jhtml   (488 words)

 The Old Dark House (1932) Overview
The denizens of the house include Horace Femm, an hysteric, his sister Rebecca, a religious fanatic, and Morgan, their scarred, brutish butler, who is a mute.
At first Saul seems to be the only sane inhabitant of the house, but he proves that he is as crazy as the rest when he tries to kill Penderal.
The five guests leave the house behind as quickly as possible and Horace cheerfully bids them goodbye, as if the events of the night had never happened.
www.tcm.com /tcmdb/title.jsp?stid=85479   (357 words)

The spooky old dark house genre made famous in The Cat and the Canary had already become a timeworn cliche by the time director James Whale decided to fling a few satiric barbs in its direction with a film called, appropriately enough, The Old Dark House.
Based on the J.B. Priestly novel Benighted (also the basis for William Castle's 1963 color version), Whale's film was lost for decades, a fate which has been attributed to everything from Priestly's dissatisfaction with the film to Columbia's attempts to suppress it to favor their remake.
On a dark, stormy night in Wales, several weary travelers find their way to a foreboding old house run by the prissy Horace Femm (Ernest Thesiger, doing a dry run for Bride of Frankenstein) and his religious fanatic sister, Rebecca (Eva Moore).
www.mondo-digital.com /olddarkhouse.html   (644 words)

 The Old Dark House
I had learned from reading the notes on the DVD box that THE OLD DARK HOUSE is a cult classic based on a novel by the eminent English literary critic, playwright, and fiction writer J.B. Priestley.
The setting is classic, an isolated house in the Welsh countryside on a dark and stormy night, and Arthur Edeson's shadowy, candlelit cinematography creates an appropriately foreboding atmosphere.
When the five psychotic inhabitants of the house speak, their dialogue is grand, rhetorical, and ominous, but there are also five lost travelers who have sought shelter from the storm, and when they speak, or at least when they speak among themselves, their dialogue is clever and amusing, full of snappy comebacks and whimsical posturings.
www.jeremysilman.com /movies_tv_va/old_dark_house.html   (593 words)

 Old Time Horror and Scifi Radio
A mansion known as "House of the Dead".
Someone new must be found to eat the old man's sins so that he can pass on...and his kin folk intend to find them.
His unbelieving boss visits the house one night and finds a dead night watchman and a ghostly old woman who implores him to save a piece of the house.
www.themonsterclub.com /radiolibrary.htm   (1874 words)

 notcoming.com | The Old Dark House
Beginning with the requisite dark and stormy night – a device still considered fresh and practical in 1932 –; James Whale’s The Old Dark House builds slowly, almost sporadically, into a campy pre-war thriller.
As in most Whale films, the actors are extraordinary; each inhabits his or her own atmosphere, and the diversity of their characters keeps the plot alive.
The Old Dark House, both amusing and unnatural, is a lasting testament to Whale’s career—a four-decade traipsing of tendencies and conventions embodied by the filmmaker himself.
www.notcoming.com /reviews/olddarkhouse   (635 words)

 The Old Dark House (1932)
They seek refuge at a nearby house where they are welcomed by the eccentric Horace Femm, who lives with his deaf and suspicious sister Rebecca and the mute, sinisterly hulking butler Morgan.
These were nominally quite similar to haunted house films, excepting that Old Dark House thrillers rigidly eschewed any hint of the supernatural.
Karloff gets a wonderfully sinister introduction – the door of the house opening on a single eye peering through a wedge of light, before we are introduced to his sinisterly lit bearded face and then get to see his full figure standing, in a characteristically eccentric Whale-esque touch, muttering in an incomprehensible babble.
www.moria.co.nz /horror/olddarkhouse.htm   (1050 words)

 The Old Dark House   (Site not responding. Last check: )
They come to realize that they may have been better off outside in the elements than inside this house with it’s queer inhabitants, the Femm Family: prissy brother Horace; religious fanatic sister Rebecca; Morgan the mute butler; the 102 year old patriarch, Roderick; and worst of all…Saul.
Although originally marketed as a horror film, director James Whale’s dark sense of humor and queer sensibility are very much in evidence.
But, even in the dark of the theatre "hints" of queer camp were not missed.
www.atm-nyc.org /TODH.htm   (213 words)

 sad old goth...
As with any project on a house this old (160+), every time you uncover something, you wish you didn't; the last eight inches of the roof cladding was all warped and rotting, so it has to come out and be replaced before I can start the reconstruction.
I also removed a fair bit of paint from the shingles, which is no big deal as we're going to paint the dump so it looks good for a few more years while I build up the funds to rip it all off and replace it with cedar clapboard siding, like it should have.
It was a good test for the new work of the front of the house, no leaks and, once I get the gutters up, no more water cascading down the front of the house, although it does offer a somewhat tranquillizing zen waterfall effect...
www.sadoldgoth.blogspot.com   (3785 words)

 Amazon.ca: Old Dark House (1932): James Whale, Boris Karloff, Melvyn Douglas, Charles Laughton, Lilian Bond, Ernest ...
The least successful of this quartet of fright classics, The Old Dark House came to be reconsidered a cult gem, part of the renewal of interest in Whale's talents many years after his creative peak.
Harrington's heroics complete, The Old Dark House was seen once again in its original form after many years of speculation based on recollections of those who had seen the original, some beautiful set stills that had become popular collectibles, and European critics who had viewed post-WWII prints.
On hearing it, director James Cameron first thought of casting her in the pivotal role of Old Rose in his upcoming film Titanic (1997), for which Stuart was nominated for a Best Supporting Actress Oscar, 65 years after The Old Dark House.
www.amazon.ca /Old-Dark-House-James-Whale/dp/B00000ILEU   (1439 words)

 The Old Dark House (1932)
Much of the acting in The Old Dark House, especially Charles Laughton's Sir William Porterhouse, seems overly broad and stagy by contemporary standards.
Viewers willing to look past that, though, are likely to be charmed by Whale's sly wit and moments such as Horace tossing the flowers his sister has just arranged in the fire or weaseling his way out of helping Margaret's husband, Philip (Raymond Massey) retrieve a lantern.
In the interview Harrington explains how The Old Dark House was a "lost" film until the late 1960s when he discovered a "shrunken" master in the Universal vaults.
www.reel.com /movie.asp?MID=5819&PID=10047456&Tab=reviews&CID=18   (561 words)

 Scifilm -- Musings, THE CAT CREEPS (1946)
By the time this movie made it to theatres, the "old dark house" genre had been done to death and had largely vanished from theatres.
In fact, the opening few minutes of the movie made me wonder if it was going to be an "old dark house" film at all, being concerned as it was with a politician coming under suspicion for an old murder and possibly losing an election as a result.
It also never feels like an "old dark house" movie; the characters all speak in hushed tones and take it all very seriously.
www.scifilm.org /musings3/musing1111.html   (231 words)

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