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When a woman inherits a valuable house, her nasty husband and his mistress plot murder. But the house has a protective poltergeist who thwarts the wicked pair. Written by
Mike Rogers <MICHAELPEM@aol.com>
The House in Marsh Road is directed by Montgomery Tully and adapted to screenplay by Maurice J. Wilson from the novel written by Laurence Meynell. It stars Tony Wright, Patricia Dainton, Sandra Dorne, Derek Aylward, Sam Kydd, Llewellyn Rees and Anita Sharp-Bolster. Music is by John Veale and cinematography by James Harvey.
When Jean Linton (Dainton) inherits a house in the country she hopes her hard drinking novelist husband David (Wright) will settle down and make something of himself and their marriage. However, when sultry Valerie Stockley (Dorne) arrives on the scene it's not long before David's head is turned and he begins to plot the murder of his wife. Jean is in trouble, but she has an ally, the resident poltergeist of Four Winds House...
Simplicity of plot and economical of running time and technical attributes, The House in Marsh Road should not be sought out by any "horror" fan craving poltergeist terror. This is a quaint and fun chiller for the most part, even with an air of jauntiness for the first half, in fact very much like The Uninvited (1944) in how the presence of a ghost is not seen as something to be outright feared. Then the mood for the latter stages of the play notably shifts into darker territory, here the dastardly David starts to put his plans in motion, something which signals time for the poltergeist to take a hand in proceedings. Which leads to a very good and genuinely edgy denouement at pics finale.
It never lacks for atmosphere or period flavours, or indeed for competency of performances and direction, where although it never breaks out into the upper echelons of other classic British chillers, it's still something of a "B" chiller worthy of inspection by those who don't need to be jolted out their seats. As for "Patrick the Poltergeist", he's rightly kept off screen, or is he? One scene appears to show him? Either that or a prop guy is guilty of standing in the shot? See if you can spot the moment and judge for yourself. It's just another fun part of a movie that provides gentle chills and honest entertainment. 7/10
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