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The Haunted Strangler (1958)
"Grip of the Strangler" (original title)

6.2
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Ratings: 6.2/10 from 789 users  
Reviews: 26 user | 23 critic

A researcher investigating a notorious serial killer who was hanged 20 years earlier seemingly becomes possessed by the long dead strangler.

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(as John C. Cooper) , (screenplay), 1 more credit »
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Title: The Haunted Strangler (1958)

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
James Rankin
Jean Kent ...
Cora Seth
Elizabeth Allan ...
Barbara Rankin
...
Supt. Burk
Vera Day ...
Pearl
Tim Turner ...
Dr. Kenneth McColl
Diane Aubrey ...
Lily Rankin
Max Brimmell ...
Newgate Prison Turnkey
Leslie Perrins ...
Newgate Prison Governor
Jessica Cairns ...
Asylum Maid
Dorothy Gordon ...
Hannah
Desmond Roberts ...
Dr. Johnson
Roy Russell ...
Medical Superintendent
Derek Birch ...
Guyse Hospital Superintendent
Peggy Ann Clifford ...
Kate
Edit

Storyline

A writer investigating the execution of a serial killer known as "The Haymarket Strangler" 20 years previously begins to suspect that the wrong man might have been hanged. However, when he picks up a scalpel used by the murderer, he finds himself possessed by the killer's spirit and begins committing similar murders. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Their wild beauty marked them for death by . . . The Haunted Strangler See more »

Genres:

Crime | Mystery | Horror

Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

24 April 1959 (Netherlands)  »

Also Known As:

The Haunted Strangler  »

Box Office

Budget:

£70,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

While director Robert Day and the make-up man were discussing how to achieve Boris Karloff's metamorphosis without undue complication or expense, the actor volunteered that he could achieve the effect by taking out his dentures. See more »

Goofs

One scene shows an evidence box from the Jack the Ripper case but the Haymarket Strangler that starts the movie took place in 1860 and the rest of the movie is 20 years later(1880). The Ripper killings were in 1888, 8 years after the movie takes place. See more »

Quotes

James Rankin: You mean he killed while in some sort of trance?
See more »

Connections

Featured in 100 Years of Horror: Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (1996) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Pretty good
6 September 2013 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

Not one of Boris Karloff's best films or performances, but very interesting, sort of a take on Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde with a miscarriage of justice element, and pretty good as a film. Even with the big problems it has, it is still one of Karloff's better later films, Grip of the Strangler's problems never reach rock-bottom quality like the Mexican films he starred in did. The script is on the simplistic side, there are some pacing problems with the film taking a little too long to get going and then feeling rushed towards the end, and the ending could have been better rounded off. It looks reasonable though, the settings are effective, the photography is crisp and the make-up for Karloff is used very well, when in his more murderous madman guise it is quite grotesque-looking. The music is also haunting and effectively used. There are some creepy moments and the atmosphere is unsettling and well-evoked. The story on the most part is interesting and entertaining, the first half is very promising especially. The performances are solid, best in support are Vera Day and Anthony Dawson. But only one performance comes off as really "great" and that is (predictably perhaps) Boris Karloff, as ever showing a gift for changing personalities expressively and sometimes subtly. All in all, Grip of the Strangler is a pretty good film, often decent and solid without reaching greatness excepting Karloff's performance, the best thing about the film by some considerable distance. 7/10 Bethany Cox


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