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Nightmare (1964)

6.7
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Janet is a young student at a private school; her nights are troubled by horrible dreams in which she sees her mother, who is in fact locked in an insane asylum, haunting her. Expelled ... See full summary »

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Title: Nightmare (1964)

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
David Knight ...
Henry Baxter
Moira Redmond ...
Grace Maddox
...
Janet
Brenda Bruce ...
Mary Lewis
George A. Cooper ...
John
Clytie Jessop ...
Woman in White
Irene Richmond ...
Mrs. Gibbs
John Welsh ...
Doctor
Timothy Bateson ...
Barman
Elizabeth Dear ...
Janet as a Child
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Storyline

Janet is a young student at a private school; her nights are troubled by horrible dreams in which she sees her mother, who is in fact locked in an insane asylum, haunting her. Expelled because of her persistent nightmares, Janet is sent home where the nightmares continue. Written by Wheeler Winston Dixon

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

It will HAUNT your dreams! See more »


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Details

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Release Date:

17 June 1964 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Cilada Diabólica  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

2.55 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The BFI has the only 35mm print in the UK. See more »

Connections

Remake of Pesadilla (1963) See more »

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User Reviews

 
But I saw her!
3 May 2012 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

Nightmare is directed by Freddie Francis and written by Jimmy Sangster. It stars Moira Redmond, David Knight, Jennie Linden, Brenda Bruce, George A. Cooper and Clytie Jessop. Music is by Don Banks and cinematography by John Wilcox.

Young Janet (Linden) is subjected to nightmares about when she saw her insane mother knife her father to death. Sent home from boarding school to be in the care of her guardian, Janet continues to have nightmares about an unknown scar faced woman in white: Or does she?

Hammer Films had already had great success reinventing the Universal monster creature features. After Psycho in 1960, they set about producing a number of psychological based thrillers to seize the "are they, are they not mad"? zeitgeist. Most of these films have sadly become either forgotten or under seen. There is just cause to seek them out now, for while they hardly break any new ground for the hardened psycho thriller film fan, there is much artistry and craft on show to make the time spent with them well worth while. Plus, the best of them, of which Nightmare certainly belongs, often contain kicker twists or macabre like finales.

Nightmare is filmed in stark black and white HammerScope with director Francis, an ace cinematographer himself (The Innocents and latterly The Elephant Man), and Wilcox (The Evil of Frankenstein/Carve Her Name with Pride) brilliantly playing with film noirish shadows, eerie visuals and fluid sweeps of the camera. The family mansion at the centre of the story is perfect for such technical flourishes, while the trick in the tale is not letting the audience be sure about if poor Janet is actually witnessing a ghostly apparition or not? Once the answer is revealed, there is still a good third of the film to go, so it's with much credit to Sangster that the picture still has much to tell and surprise whilst keeping the suspense factor very high.

Is it flawless? As good as Hammer's unsung masterpiece in this sub-genre, Scream of Fear? No! Of course not. There's some over acting from the principal gals and the makers only just hold the attention span for some passages of the (pre)story. While there is the chance that avid followers of this type of genre piece, both English speaking or otherwise, might these days lose some surprise factor come the outcome. But fans of eerie and atmospheric black & white thrillers should definitely get on board here, for it's the creepy 1960s Hammer train and it's well worth buying a return ticket for. 8/10


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Unusually creepy, effectively atmospheric... gaby01575
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Ending doesn't make any sense d_m_s
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