6.4/10
1,436
36 user 26 critic

Diary of a Madman (1963)

Approved | | Horror | 6 March 1963 (USA)
An evil spirit leaves the body of his human host, a criminal on death-row, and sneaks into the body of his next human host, a French magistrate.

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Writers:

(stories),
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Magistrate Simon Cordier
...
Odette Mallotte
Chris Warfield ...
Paul Duclasse
Elaine Devry ...
Jeanne D'Arville
...
Pierre
Stephen Roberts ...
Police Captain Robert Rennedon
Lewis Martin ...
Father Raymonde
...
Louise
Edward Colmans ...
Andre D'Arville
...
Dr. Borman
...
Louis Girot
...
Martin
Wayne Collier ...
Arguing Cafe Couple
Gloria Clark ...
Arguing Cafe Couple
Don Brodie ...
Marcel the Postman
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Storyline

Simon Cordier is a well-respected magistrate who visits a condemned prisoner, Louis Girot, just before the man's execution. Girot again pleads his innocence insisting that he has been taken over by a spirit that forced him to commit his crimes. Cordier doesn't believe him and the man suddenly dies. Cordier does however note a rapid change in his personality during their short interview. In the following days, Cordier must face a number of strange occurrences in his home. He begins to wonder if he is sleepwalking but is soon hearing voices and begins to wonder about his sanity. It's recommended to him that he take up sculpting, something he once had an interest in. He develops a relationship with Odette, a gold digger married to a struggling artist, but the evil, invisible spirit soon drives him to murder. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

He upholds the law, except when he murders.

Genres:

Horror

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

6 March 1963 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Horla  »

Box Office

Budget:

$350,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
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Did You Know?

Goofs

In one scene the Horla crushes a rose flat on a table, but in a subsequent scene, in a wider shot the rose on the table is visible and has not been flattened. See more »

Quotes

[first title card]
Title Card: "... the vulture has eaten the pigeon; the wolf has eaten the lamb; the lion has devoured the sharp-tongued buffalo; man has killed the lion with an arrow, with spear, with gun-powder; but the *"Horla"* will make of man what man has made of the horse and of the ox; His chattel, His slave, and His food, but the mere power of His will. Woe to us!"... Guy de Maupassant
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Connections

Featured in 100 Years of Horror: Demons (1996) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Despite the somewhat negative comments of some other reviewers, I have to say I found this movie "magnetic"
19 June 2006 | by (Canada) – See all my reviews

Probably the "magnetic" nature of this movie as referred to above was due solely to acting and as-expected sinister nature of Vincent Price. For me, any movie starring this superb character actor was always a guarantee of my liking it. Noting that several movies with this title have been made, I would like to be able to compare them with this version. Also, in his "genre", Guy De Maupassant could always be relied upon to tell a good story. I have "experienced" quite a few of them, both in movie and written formats. I think that *that* is about all I have to say in this particular instance. To have to write any more would merely constitute "padding". I most certainly would recommend this movie to those viewers who enjoy this type of movie.


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