England, 1795: the young Catherine has just married Charles Fengriffen and moves into his castle. She becomes the victim of an old curse that lays on the family. On her wedding night she is raped by a ghost and gets pregnant.
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Peter Graham Scott
In 1795, in England, the young woman Catherine moves to the house of her fiancé Charles Fengriffen in the country to get married with him. When she arrives, she feels interest in the portraits of the Fengriffen family, particularly in the one of Charle's grandfather Henry Fengriffen, which seems to have a sort of evil entity possessing it. While admiring Henry's face, a severed hand attacks Catherine through the picture on the wall. Later, she gets married with Charles, beginning her journey of mystery, eerie apparitions, secrets and deaths, and having her days filled with fear and the nights with horrors in a cursed family. Written by
Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Virginal newlywed Catherine Fengriffen (Stephanie Beacham) moves into her husband's ancestral home where she suffers from horrific visions of a man with a severed hand and bloody eye sockets. Catherine thinks she's losing the plot, but hubby Charles (Ian Ogilvy) knows better: his family is under a curse brought about decades earlier by his wicked, hedonistic grandfather Henry (Herbert Lom) who violated a woodsman's wife on her wedding night. Psychologist Dr. Pope (Peter Cushing), who has been brought in to treat Catherine, slowly begins to unravel the mystery...
And Now The Screaming Starts sets out to do two thingsjangle the nerves, and stir the loins of its male viewersboth of which it does well. Seasoned horror director Roy Ward Baker expertly handles his spooky material, carefully crafting a creepy atmosphere that keeps the viewer on edge throughout, and peppers proceedings with a few effective jump scares for good measure; meanwhile, gorgeous star Beacham sets the pulses pounding, her heaving bosom barely restrained by her long line of cleavage enhancing outfits.
Admittedly Beacham's incessant histrionics can get a little irritating at times, and the pacing is perhaps a little too slow for some, but there's enough good stuff here to keep most fans of Gothic '70s British horror more than happy, including a cool crawling hand (a nifty 'clockwork' special effects creation), Cushing in a foppish wig, Lom being utterly despicable as horrid Henry (the actor delivering his debauched dialogue with relish), and Ogilvy desecrating a grave with an axe, pulling the mouldy corpse out and giving it a damn good kicking!
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