IMDb > The City of the Dead (1960)
The City of the Dead
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The City of the Dead (1960) More at IMDbPro »

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The City of the Dead -- Nan Barlow, a student of the occult, is encouraged by her history professor, Driscoll, to visit the decaying village of Whitewood, Massachusetts. The proprietress of the Ravens Inn is in reality a witch who was burned at the stake in 1692, but restored to life through a pact with the Devil.
The City of the Dead -- Open-ended Trailer from Elite


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Up 4% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
George Baxt (screenplay)
Milton Subotsky (story)
View company contact information for The City of the Dead on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
12 September 1961 (USA) See more »
300 years old! Human blood keeps them alive forever! See more »
A young coed (Nan Barlow) uses her winter vacation to research a paper on witchcraft in New England... See more » | Full synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
User Reviews:
Immensely Creepy and Terrifying Classic See more (101 total) »


  (in credits order) (verified as complete)
Dennis Lotis ... Richard Barlow

Christopher Lee ... Alan Driscoll
Patricia Jessel ... Elizabeth Selwyn / Mrs. Newless
Tom Naylor ... Bill Maitland
Betta St. John ... Patricia Russell
Venetia Stevenson ... Nan Barlow
Valentine Dyall ... Jethrow Keane
Ann Beach ... Lottie
Norman Macowan ... Reverend Russell
Fred Johnson ... The Elder
James Dyrenforth ... Garage Attendant (as Jimmy Dyrenforth)
Maxine Holden ... Sue
William Abney ... Policeman
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Nickolas Grace ... (uncredited)

Directed by
John Llewellyn Moxey  (as John Moxey)
Writing credits
George Baxt (screenplay)

Milton Subotsky (story)

Produced by
Seymour S. Dorner .... executive producer
Milton Subotsky .... executive producer
Donald Taylor .... producer
Max Rosenberg .... producer (uncredited)
Original Music by
Douglas Gamley 
Cinematography by
Desmond Dickinson 
Film Editing by
John Pomeroy 
Art Direction by
John Blezard 
Makeup Department
Barbara Barnard .... hairdresser
George Claff .... makeup artist
Production Management
Ben Arbeid .... production manager
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Tom Pevsner .... assistant director
Sound Department
Richard Bird .... sound mixer
Special Effects by
Cliff Richardson .... special effects
Camera and Electrical Department
Jack Atcheler .... camera operator
Ronnie Fox Rogers .... first assistant camera (uncredited)
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Frede Gibson .... wardrobe supervisor (as Freda Gibson)
Music Department
Douglas Gamley .... conductor
Ken Jones .... composer: jazz music
Other crew
Splinters Deason .... set continuity
Crew verified as complete

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
"Horror Hotel" - USA
See more »
Rated PG-13 for some violence (re-rating)
Norway:75 min | USA:76 min | USA:78 min (uncut version)
Aspect Ratio:
1.66 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Mono (Westrex Recording System)
Australia:M | Finland:K-16 (1990) | Finland:(Banned) (1961) | Norway:16 (1971) | UK:15 | USA:Not Rated (original rating) | USA:PG-13 (re-rating) | West Germany:16 (nf)

Did You Know?

Released in the U.S. on a double bill with the West German film The Head (1959) in June 1963.See more »
Factual errors: The character played by Tom Naylor is called "Bill Maitland" in the dialogue but shown as "Tom Maitland" in the end credits.See more »
Prof. Alan Driscoll:The basis of fairy tale is in reality. The basis of reality is fairy talesSee more »
Movie Connections:
Referenced in Inside the Tower (2015) (V)See more »


What gives the shot of Elizabeth Selwyn on the stake its peculiar quality?
Is this available on DVD?
Why was the title changed to 'Horror Hotel' for U.S. release?
See more »
2 out of 2 people found the following review useful.
Immensely Creepy and Terrifying Classic, 9 June 2008
Author: Bensch

"Psycho", "Black Sunday", "House Of Usher", "Peeping Tom",... 1960 truly was one of the greatest years ever for Horror cinema. In the same year in which Mario Bava brought us THE single greatest witchcraft film of all-time (and, in my personal opinion, one of the greatest films ever) with his masterpiece "La Maschera Del Demonio" (aka. "Black Sunday"), John Llewelin Moxey came along with this awesome and immensely creepy little Horror gem named "The City Of The Dead" (aka. "Horror Hotel"). While "Horror Hotel" may not quite be a milestone en par with "Black Sunday", this doubtlessly is a masterwork of creepy atmosphere. None other than the great Christopher Lee stars in this surprisingly obscure Gothic tale which is stunning from the first minute. This truly is a genuinely scary and terrifying cinematic experience that no Horror lover could possibly afford to miss.

"The City Of The Dead" ingeniously begins in 1692, when the accused Witch Elisabeth Sewlyn is dragged to the stake and burned by the people of Whitewood, Massachusets. Almost three centuries later Professor Alan Driscoll (Christopher Lee) is teaching history classes on the phenomenon of Witchcraft. He sends his best student, a girl named Nan Barlow (Venetia Stevenson) to the village of Whitewood, where she is to do research on the Sewlyn case... The first few minutes alone are actually creepier than the majority of films get at their climax, and a scary beginning certainly isn't the only thing this film has to offer. The village of Whitewood is the creepiest place imaginable, an obscure cemetery and a gathering of eerie old houses, surrounded by dark, menacing forest. The ingenious black and white photography intensifies the film's atmosphere, this could not have possibly been as intensely creepy if it had been shot in color. Equally great is the score, the main theme is easily one of the creepiest pieces of Horror soundtrack I ever heard. It do not suppose it is necessary to mention that Christopher Lee is one of the greatest Horror icons ever, and he is once again brilliant in his role. So is Patricia Jessel, who is ingenious in her double-role, and who sadly did not appear in many other films after this one. Great supporting performances include Valentine Dyall and Norman Macowan in the role of a blind old priest. In short: "Horror Hotel" is a film that is still terrifying after almost half a century, and a must-see for every Horror fan!

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I was the Director johnmoxey
The dance scene Norloonda
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Killed of the lead *** POSSIBLE SPOILER *** TheLaughingWolf
An unusal horror movie brand78
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