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Francis Ford Coppola
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 <email@example.com>
William Castle was able to get popular child actor Charles Herbert to play Buck by offering to give him top billing. Charles Herbert would appear in this and two other features in this year before roles in features completely dried up. He would complete his career in television roles. See more »
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 »
There's a witch in the house. Ring the bell; she'll answer.
[Ben rings the bell, Medea answers]
What'd you do that for? You should've let the Witch answer it.
You need to stop calling her that or she'll cut your tongue out.
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13 Ghosts has stood the test of time well, as have most of Castle's films. While much is made of the gimmick of seeing the ghosts with 3d glasses, the movie itself is well made and not just a vehicle to carry the gimmick. Seeing the movie on television or video without the 3d glasses (but with the ghosts visible) makes you realize this is a well made film.
The scene where the father encounters the ghosts for the first time in the hidden room is quite spooky, and the special effects are almost hypnotic to watch. The story behind the ghosts being in the house is developed quite well, and makes the ghosts themselves more enjoyable. The ghosts range from almost comical to truly frightening, and it is fun to wait and see what kind of spirit you will encounter next.
The house itself is a rather nice piece of real estate, and I'm sure some people have driven around Los Angeles trying to find it. Martin Milner plays the lawyer who facilitates the will giving the family the house, and it is interesting to see him in his pre-Adam 12 days.
13 Ghosts is definitely worth watching, especially around Halloween. While some may find the plot and idea less than satisfying, I found it to be very spooky. And you really do get to see all 13 ghosts!
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