Two young thugs rob a bookie leaving a dog-racing track with his winnings, but when they grab his case full of money they discover that he has chained it to his wrist. They dash around town... See full summary »
When his brother disappears, Robert Manning pays a visit to the remote country house he was last heard from. While his host is outwardly welcoming - and his niece more demonstrably so - ... See full summary »
In 1950s London racial hostility to Commonweath immigrants is openly paraded. A pregnant girl, initially assumed to be white, is murdered. As two detectives start to investigate, and ... See full summary »
An old man who lives in an old house conducts a correctional institute for girls. But he does not realize that the date is the present as he's been cooped up in the house. He is assisted by... See full summary »
Jaap van Leyden is in charge of a shipyard in newly occupied Holland. At first he collaborates with the Germans because it is the easiest course to follow. Later a child's rhyme reminds him... See full summary »
Christopher Lee stars in the Amicus production of "Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde" where the names have been changed to Dr. Marlowe and Mr. Blake. Lee as Dr. Marlowe experiments with intravenous ... See full summary »
We're gonna rock down to the house on Electric Avenue!
"House of Mystery" is an extremely obscure and unknown little film, but if you do eventually encounter a review for it on the internet left or right, it's always very positive and praising. That's the main reason why I tracked it down, actually, since I'm continuously on the lookout for hidden gems in the horror genre. Another thing motivating me to look for a copy was the name of director Vernon Sewell. Sewell definitely isn't the most prominent of British horror directors from the 1960's and 1970's, but he nevertheless made a couple of interesting hit-and-miss films, like "The Horrors of Burke & Hare", "Ghost Ship", "The Blood Beast Terror" and "The Curse of the Crimson Altar". Sadly I have to announce that "House of Mystery" honestly isn't an undiscovered masterpiece. It's a modest, compelling and moderately engaging little thriller with a few good ideas and admirably tense atmosphere, but the conclusion isn't nearly as shocking as build up towards to. With its short running time of barely 56 minutes and abrupt transitions between scenes, "House of Mystery" feels more like an episode in a supernaturally themed TV-show, like Alfred Hitchcock Presents or something. The plot is about a young couple scouting for affordable houses on the British countryside and stumbling upon one that is extremely well-priced considering its size and condition. Obviously there's a minor catch, because the curious female caretaker tells them about the house's dark past. It seems another young couple already bought the house before them and they had problems with the lamps and the TV-set, as a result of electrical impulses around the house going bonkers. The house was originally owned by an electrical engineer Mark Lemming, who discovered that his wife and her lover wanted him dead and invented a little game to get even. "House of Mystery" has a bizarre flashback within flashback narrative structure of which I don't really understand the added value. The couple listens to the story of another innocent couple's bad experiences with the house. How they hired a paranormal detective and how they witnessed a séance to discover the truth. What exactly is the point of all these extra characters? Also, the more you contemplate about the murder plot, the less sense it makes. The fiendish lovers try to kill Mark Lemming through electrocution. Hello, he's an electrical engineer!? Of course he saw through the plan. That's like wanting to kill Mike Tyson in a boxing ring. It just doesn't work. The flashback illustrating Lemming's vengeance abruptly ends without ever stating clear whatever happened to the survivors, so I really can't call it great thriller stuff even if I wanted to. The concept of domestic terror through electrical booby traps is creative and assures a few suspenseful sequences, but that still doesn't guarantee a horror sleeper hit.
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