Night Gallery (1969–1973)
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Night Gallery (The Cemetery/Eyes/The Escape Route) 

A seemingly haunted painting drives a greedy man insane. A rich blind woman gets a new pair of eyes that allow her to see for only one brief ironic moment. An idyllic painting gives a Nazi war criminal in hiding some fleeting comfort.



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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Miss Claudia Menlo
Osmund Portifoy
Jeremy Evans
Dr. Frank Heatherton
Sidney Resnick
William Hendricks
1st Agent
Tom Basham ...
George J. Packer
Garry Goodrow ...
1st Nurse


In the pilot of the television series Night Gallery (1969), Rod Serling introduces three separate paintings, each with its own story of uncanny vengeance against evil to tell. The first, "The Cemetery", involves a black sheep nephew (Roddy McDowall) who murders his rich uncle to inherit his fortune - both much to the detriment of the uncle's butler (Ossie Davis) - only to find that vengeance extends beyond the grave. In the second story, "Eyes", a rich, heartless woman (Joan Crawford) who has been blind from birth blackmails an aspiring surgeon and a man who desperately needs money to give her a pair of eyes which will allow her to see for the first time - even though for only half a day's time - only to have the plan backfire on her in ways she never imagined. In the third story, "The Escape Route", a Nazi war criminal (Richard Kiley) is hiding from the authorities in South America, where he is confronted with his past demons and a curious Holocaust survivor (Sam Jaffe) and finds ... Written by Curly Q. Link

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8 November 1969 (USA)  »

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Did You Know?


Helmut Arndt left Venezuela in April 1961. See more »


At the beginning of the Joan Crawford segment, we're told that Miss Menlo lives on Fifth Avenue. But the opening shot is on Park Avenue, not Fifth. See more »


Rod Serling - Host: [Second segment narration] Objet d'art number two, a portrait. Its subject, Miss Claudia Menlo, a blind queen who reigns in a carpeted penthouse on Fifth Avenue. An imperious, predatory dowager who will soon find a darkness blacker than blindness. This is her story.
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Referenced in Rate It X (1986) See more »


Cielito Lindo
Music by Quirino Mendoza
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User Reviews

Enjoyable 3-part TV movie that launched "Night Gallery"
8 June 1999 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Very well made TV movie, with 3 different stories. the first stars Roddy McDowall as a bastard nephew who kills his uncle to take his money, then is haunted by the ghost of the uncle (or so he thinks) to death. Ossie Davis also stars in this episode, and he's wonderful. This is my personal favorite of the three. Roddy is snide and sly as the nephew, and when he starts to come unhinged he's marvelous. The second stars Richard Kiel as a WWII concentration camp captain hiding in some South American city, where he becomes strangely fixated with an idyllic painting of a man fishing in a mountain lake. The painting hangs in a museum, and he spends day after day in there just staring at it and eventually feels himself drawn into the painting. It's a relief to be hounded no longer by the war crimes police when he's in the painting. But back in reality he's recognized as a Nazi who was condemned after the war, and a former camp inmate tells the police about him. Kiel runs to the museum, intent on going into the life in the painting for good. But he makes a big, big mistake and will spend eternity paying for it and his crimes against humanity. The last episode stars Joan Crawford in a pretty much one-woman play. She's a blind rich woman, living in a huge penthouse apartment in NYC, who pays a loser for his corneas so that she can have them transplanted in her eyes. The kicker is that she will only be able to see for about 8 hours, and she doesn't care a bit that the man she takes the corneas from will be blind forever. She has the operation, and when the time comes to take the bandages off, the instant she does the city is plunged into a blackout. She spends the 8 hours trying to get out of the apartment building in the dark stairwells, and finally makes it back to her apartment when the sun comes up. She finally sees the sun, but it's the last thing she does.

I love this movie; and I also loved Night Gallery, but this film has 3 different viewpoints and would appeal to a large audience. All the performances are excellent. Steven Spielberg directed the Joan Crawford segment, "Eyes"; it was one of his first director assignments.

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