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The Dunwich Horror (1970)

R | | Horror | 14 January 1970 (USA)
2:13 | Trailer

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Wilbur Whateley pops over to the Arkham Miskatonic University to borrow the legendary Necronomicon and Sandra Dee. But little does anyone know, Whateley isn't quite human...



(screenplay) (as Curtis Lee Hanson), (screenplay) | 2 more credits »



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Complete credited cast:
Nancy Wagner
Dr. Cory
Joanne Moore Jordan ...
Lavinia Whateley (as Joanna Moore Jordan)
Donna Baccala ...
Elizabeth Hamilton
Nurse Cora (as Talia Coppola)
Michael Fox ...
Dr. Raskin
Sheriff Harrison
Barboura Morris ...
Mrs. Cole
Beach Dickerson ...
Mr. Cole
Michael Haynes ...
Toby Russ ...
Jack Pierce ...


H.P. Lovecraft meets Hollywood: Wilbur Whateley wants to help the Old Ones break through by consulting the Necronomicon, and Armitage must stop him. Attractive females are added to fill out the plot. Written by Brian Bixby <barbix@tiac.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


H.P. Lovecraft's Classic Tale Of Terror And The Supernatural! See more »



Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some sexuality/nudity | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:



Release Date:

14 January 1970 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Dunwich Horror  »

Filming Locations:

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


The odd symbol that appears again and again - on Wilbur's ring, on his grandfather's staff, in the design on the main floor, etc. - is actually an ancient Native American symbol commonly termed "Thunderbird in sun". See more »


Every person in the movie pronounces the town's name as "Dun-witch"; in fact, it is pronounced "Dun-itch", with a silent 'W' as in "Greenwich village". See more »


Wilbur Whateley: Come back, Old Ones... Princes of Darkness... and repossess the earth.
See more »


Version of The Dunwich Horror (2010) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Decent adaptation of H.P. Lovecraft's short story.
20 May 2003 | by (Ohio, USA) – See all my reviews

Sandra Dee (the original GIDGET to you beach bunny fans) is Nancy Wagner, a virginal blonde student at Miskatonic University who meets Wilbur (Dean Stockwell), the grandson of a warlock who was lynched years earlier.

Wilbur shows interest in the Necronomicon and in Nancy, because he needs both to open a gateway for demons called "The Old Ones" to enter our world. He invites her back to his secluded home in Dunwich, where he keeps her drugged, plots to sacrifice her on a seaside altar and fights with his senile, ranting grandfather (Sam Jaffe). A strange-looking, barely-seen, multi-headed flying monster that sees things in negative (and looks kind of like GHIDRAH!), is kept locked in the attic, but escapes for the silly finale.

It's amusing to see the once-wholesome Sandra Dee saying sex is "great" and simulating orgasm while being groped on an altar, but she should also get credit for delivering a decent performance. Ditto Ed Begley in his last role as a heroic professor. Stockwell is so soft-spoken and weird it's hard to gouge just how good (or bad) his performance really is.

Compared to most recent H.P. Lovecraft adaptations, this isn't half bad and it all looks very cool and colorful. Roger Corman was the executive producer. Director Haller also made DIE, MONSTER, DIE, which was based on Lovecraft's "The Colour Out of Space."

36 of 40 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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