IMDb > Scream of Fear (1961)
Taste of Fear
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Scream of Fear (1961) More at IMDbPro »Taste of Fear (original title)

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Down 18% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Jimmy Sangster (written by)
View company contact information for Scream of Fear on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
22 August 1961 (USA) See more »
For maximum thrill . . . we earnestly urge you to see this motion picture from the start!
A wheelchair-bound young woman returns to her father's estate after ten years, and although she's told he's away, she keeps seeing his dead body on the estate. Full summary » | Full synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
User Reviews:
A major highlight for Hammer studios! See more (53 total) »


  (in credits order) (complete, awaiting verification)

Susan Strasberg ... Penny Appleby
Ronald Lewis ... Robert
Ann Todd ... Jane Appleby

Christopher Lee ... Doctor Pierre Gerrard
John Serret ... Inspector Legrand
Leonard Sachs ... Mr. Spratt
Anne Blake ... Marie the Maid
Fred Johnson ... Father
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Heinz Bernard ... Plainclothes Officer (uncredited)
Bernard Browne ... Gendarme (uncredited)
Rodney Burke ... Policeman (uncredited)

Brian Jackson ... Plainclothes Officer (uncredited)
Richard Klee ... Plainclothes Sergeant (uncredited)
Madame Lobegue ... Swiss Air Hostess (uncredited)
Frederick Rawlings ... Plainclothes Sergeant (uncredited)
Frederick Schrecker ... Plainclothes Officer (uncredited)
Gordon Sterne ... Policeman (uncredited)

Directed by
Seth Holt 
Writing credits
Jimmy Sangster (written by)

Produced by
Michael Carreras .... executive producer
Jimmy Sangster .... producer
Original Music by
Clifton Parker 
Cinematography by
Douglas Slocombe (director of photography)
Film Editing by
Eric Boyd-Perkins 
Casting by
Stuart Lyons 
Production Design by
Bernard Robinson 
Art Direction by
Thomas Goswell (uncredited)
Makeup Department
Eileen Bates .... hair stylist
Basil Newall .... make-up artist
Production Management
William Hill .... production manager (as Bill Hill)
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
David Tomblin .... assistant director
Terry Lens .... second assistant director (uncredited)
Art Department
Bill Constable .... assistant art director (uncredited)
Sound Department
Jim Groom .... sound editor (as James Groom)
Les Hammond .... sound recordist (as Leslie Hammond)
Teddy Mason .... sound recordist (as E. Mason)
Len Shilton .... sound recordist
Special Effects by
Les Bowie .... special effects (uncredited)
Ian Scoones .... special effects assistant (uncredited)
Camera and Electrical Department
Desmond Davis .... camera operator
Len Harris .... camera: second unit (uncredited)
George Higgins .... still photographer (uncredited)
John Jordan .... underwater camera operator (uncredited)
Harry Oakes .... camera: second unit (uncredited)
Egil S. Woxholt .... underwater camera operator (uncredited)
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Dora Lloyd .... wardrobe mistress
Editorial Department
James Needs .... supervising editor
John Crome .... assistant editor (uncredited)
Music Department
John Hollingsworth .... musical supervisor
Other crew
Pamela Mann .... continuity
Colin Reid .... unit publicist (uncredited)
Dennison Thornton .... publicity director (uncredited)

Production CompaniesDistributors

Additional Details

Also Known As:
"Taste of Fear" - UK (original title)
See more »
81 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.37 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Mono (RCA Sound Recording)
Finland:K-16 | Norway:16 | Sweden:15 | UK:X (original rating) | UK:12 (video rating: as Scream of Fear) (2010) | USA:Approved (certificate #19820) | West Germany:16

Did You Know?

Christopher Lee's most vivid recollection of the film is, while shooting the dining-room scene, suddenly realizing he was being observed by Gary Cooper. Director Seth Holt remarked that Lee looked as though he'd "seen a ghost." Cooper was shooting what was to be his last film, The Naked Edge (1961), at the studio, and Lee recalls seeing Cooper having lunch every day by himself--the actor was dying of cancer.See more »
Anachronisms: When the policeman is telling Mrs. Abblebee and Bob about the car accident, he says the car was found in 30 feet of water. When we see the car in the water it is just below the surface.See more »
Penny Appleby:[to Dr. Gerrard] You say my mind is affecting my legs. You're wrong. It's my legs that are affecting my mind.See more »
Movie Connections:


What is this movie about?
How did Penny become crippled?
Is "Taste of Fear" based on a book?
See more »
19 out of 24 people found the following review useful.
A major highlight for Hammer studios!, 18 August 2006
Author: The_Void from Beverley Hills, England

Whenever I think of Hammer Horror, I think of bright colourful camp films; but Hammer also made a handful of black and white mysteries, and many of these stand up as some of their best films. Hysteria, Nightmare and Paranoiac are all very good films; but Seth Holt's Taste of Fear tops the lot! This suspenseful mystery draws the viewer in from the start and doesn't let go until the credits role. The film introduces the wheelchair bound character Penny Appleby; an amiable young girl who strives for independence in spite of her disability. The story picks up upon her return home to the French Riviera for the first time in ten years at the request of her father. Her nightmare starts when she begins seeing the corpse of her father at random places around the house and grounds of the place where she's staying. The friendly chauffeur Bob decides to help the girl get to the bottom of the mystery, but everything is turned upside down when it becomes obvious that nobody in the film is what they appear.

Initially, the film plays out like it's going to be quite predictable; and indeed, my prediction for what is going to happen actually does happen...but director Seth Holt doesn't show his hand too early, and there is a major twist at the end that I certainly didn't see coming. Director Seth Holt does a really good job with this film, as he gets good performances out of all his cast, the twists are well worked; and best of all, the atmosphere is scintillating! Holt continually imposes an oppressive air of foreboding over the film, and the creepy house provides a fantastic location for a film like this to take place. The film features a relatively small role for Hammer regular, Christopher Lee, who gets to don a silly accent while remaining mysterious. Lead actress Susan Strasberg is the pick of the cast, however, as aside from being stunning; she's not a bad actress either. The film works principally because it keeps the focus on the mystery, and this means that it retains its thriller intentions throughout. Overall, this might be a lesser known Hammer film; but it's not lesser in quality, and I wouldn't hesitate to name this as one of the best films the studio ever produced.

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Message Boards

Discuss this movie with other users on IMDb message board for Scream of Fear (1961)
Recent Posts (updated daily)User
Why aren't modern movies made suspenseful like this Plush_Poodle
The body (spoiler alert) pocca
Not really wheelchair-bound. so... lawrenced-544-76959
Could they do this again but fix the plot holes? mickeyone
great movie but a different ending... (spoiler) bonerthebarbarian
Good movie but...(spoilers) strummer57
See more »


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