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13 Ghosts (1960)

 -  Horror  -  July 1960 (USA)
6.1
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Ratings: 6.1/10 from 3,065 users  
Reviews: 73 user | 55 critic

A family inherits what proves to be a haunted house, but a special pair of goggles allows them to see their ghostly tormentors.

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Title: 13 Ghosts (1960)

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Director: William Castle
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Charles Herbert ...
Jo Morrow ...
...
Benjamen Rush
Rosemary DeCamp ...
Hilda Zorba (as Rosemary De Camp)
Donald Woods ...
...
John Van Dreelen ...
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Storyline

Reclusive Dr. Zorba has died and left his eerie mansion to his penniless nephew Cyrus Zorba and his family. Along with the house, the Zorba family has also inherited the occultist's collection of 12 ghosts, who can only be seen through Zorba's special goggles. The family members, their lives at risk upon the discovery that Dr. Zorba's fortune lies hidden somewhere in the house, receive aid from unexpected quarters as the threat to their lives is revealed. Written by Doug Sederberg <vornoff@sonic.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

IT'S FUN TO BE SCARED BY 13 GHOSTS (original print ad - all caps) See more »

Genres:

Horror

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

July 1960 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Thirteen Ghosts  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (black and white)

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound Recording)

Color:

| (Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

William Castle:  [gimmick]  The movie was filmed in "Illusion-O" and a special viewer was needed to see the ghosts. This resulted in a number of sources incorrectly stating that the film was originally shown in 3D. The "ghost viewers" contained a red filter and a blue filter, but unlike 3D viewers/glasses, both eyes would look through the same color filter. The red filter would cause the ghostly images to intensify while the blue filter caused the images to fade. See more »

Goofs

When Buck is playing with The Great Shadrach's (the lion tamer's) props, he opens the cage then puts on the glasses. The image of the lion is far larger than the cage which supposedly contained it. Granted that a ghost need not be subject to physical limitations, the cage could not have contained a live animal that size. See more »

Quotes

Buck Zorba: [as Ben walks in the door] Ben, I found it!
[grabs the railing and shakes it to reveal the hidden area in the stairs]
Ben Rush: Good boy! Have you told anyone else about this?
Buck Zorba: Course not! Let's tell them now.
[Runs towards the dining room; Ben grabs his arm stopping him]
Buck Zorba: Ow! You're hurting!
Ben Rush: Sorry, Buck. We can't tell them yet.
Buck Zorba: But we're moving out tomorrow!
See more »

Connections

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User Reviews

 
The Best of William Castle
9 March 2001 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Ghost movies are among my favorite horror movies even over vampire pictures because you can't screw up a ghost movie while so many vampire movies rewrite vampire legends to fit their plots. William Castle knew how to make really good "haunted house" pictures. "House on Haunted Hill" is a classic, even with it's so-so remake, but I think "Thirteen Ghosts" deserves to be counted as Castle's best. In this movie he sets up a family nearing financial destitution despite the father's white collar job. This family with its knock-out daughter and flighty son (I shouldn't complain, that boy acts and talks the same way I was at his age) loses everything except their private belongings and then discovers a forgotten rich relative has left them his house and fortune. Wouldn't you want that to happen to you ? Before you say 'yes,' the house turns out to be haunted by the eccentric relative's ghost collection (this was years before "Ghostbusters"). The family has to decide to give up the house which may be hiding the relative's missing fortune or give it all up. It's a great plot, but the "Illusio" used at the time to create the ghosts with special glasses doesn't translate well to the black and white of today's tv screens, not even if you try to substitute 3-D glasses.Still, for what you see of them, the ghosts are chilling in a surreal sort of way as they go about their business and scare the family on the side. Some of the acting is campy, particularly De Camp's reactions to the ghosts in the kitchen. The boy, Buck, can be particularly chilling in the way Haley Joel Osment was for "The Sixth Sense." The daughter, Medea, played by obscure Jo Morrow, overdoes some of the stern sister's acting, but the father is played somewhat wooden. "Adam-12's" Martin Milner looks out of his element as the family lawyer, but he was near the start of his acting career. Kudos have to go to the casting of Margaret Hamilton from "The Wizard of Oz" as the housekeeper who may or may not be a witch in this movie too. Can you imagine what this movie would have been like with Ann B. Davis ?


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This movie is horrifying drewdammron
This was a movie that under now standards would suck! terryvey
where is this house? myadammo
what was the point? grand_duchess1895
Who played the telegram delivery guy? maloneyonweb
Writing a comparison paper on this + remake, figgynixon
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