The Legend of Hell House
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The following FAQ entries may contain spoilers. Only the biggest ones (if any) will be covered with spoiler tags. Spoiler tags have been used sparingly in order to make the page more readable.

For detailed information about the amounts and types of (a) sex and nudity, (b) violence and gore, (c) profanity, (d) alcohol, drugs, and smoking, and (e) frightening and intense scenes in this movie, consult the IMDb Parents Guide for this movie. The Parents Guide for The Legend of Hell House can be found here.

Physicist Lionel Barrett (Clive Revill), along with his wife Ann (Gayle Hunnicutt) and two spiritual mediums -- mental medium Florence Tanner (Pamela Franklin) and physical medium Ben Fischer (Roddy McDowall) -- are commissioned to investigate the possibility of life after death by staying for five days in the Belasco House, also known as Hell House, 'the one place where [survival after death] has yet to be refuted'. In a similar investigation about 20 years earlier, all of the investigators except for Ben Fischer were either killed, driven insane, or severely crippled. For 100,000, however, the investigators are willing to take their chances, and Dr Barrett is certain that his 'reverser' machine will negate the residual, undirected electromagnetic radiation (EMR) that he feels is the true cause of the problem...not any disembodied spirits.

Yes. Hell House (1971) is a novel by American novelist Richard Matheson. Matheson also wrote the screenplay for the movie. It is not to be confused with the novel The Haunting of Hill House (1959) by Shirley Jackson, which was made into the 1963 film The Haunting and a 1999 remake, also titled The Haunting.

'Although the story of this film is fictitious, the events depicted involving psychic phenomena are not only very much within the bounds of possibility, but could well be true. Tom Corbett, Clairvoyant and Psychic Consultant to European Royalty'

The exterior shots of 'Hell House' are actually of Wykehurst Place in the small town of Bolney, south of London in West Sussex. An image of the house can be seen here. Interior shots were filmed at Elstree Studios in Borehamwood, Hertfordshire, England. The location for the opening scene (the estate of Mr. Deutsch) is Blenheim Palace in Oxfordshire. It's the birthplace of Winston Churchill, and was built by his ancestor, John Churchill, first Duke of Marlborough.

Ben is determined to find out why the 'reverser' cleared the entire house except for the chapel. He and Ann return to the chapel. He notices the 'B' that Florence wrote in her own blood and concludes that she was trying to tell him 'Belasco...only Belasco.' He ponders the bodies of Florence and Barrett, noticing that they both had their legs broken. He remembers that the previous investigators all suffered the same fate, either ending up with broken backs or legs. Ben begins to taunt Belasco, accusing him of being no 'roaring giant' but just a 'funny little dried-up bastard'. Belasco attempts to fight back by pelting Ben with objects and dropping a chandelier on him, but Ben keeps on taunting until Belasco, his shame too great, flees from the house. Suddenly a panel behind the altar collapses, revealing Belasco's preserved body seated in a chair and holding a glass of wine. To prove his point, Ben cuts open the leg of his trousers, revealing an artificial leg. Ben explains to Ann that Belasco so hated being short that he had his own legs cut off and fitted with tall prostheses. 'If thine eye offend thee, pluck it out.' Ben also notices that the chapel walls are lined with lead, which is how Belasco was protected from the effects of the reverser. With the room now exposed, Ben switches on the machine again, then he and Ann leave the house, expressing the hope that the spirits of Florence and Barrett will guide Belasco to everlasting peace.

It's from the King James Bible (authorized edition) Matthew 18:9. The whole verse goes: 'And if thine eye offend thee, pluck it out, and cast it from thee; it is better for thee to enter life with one eye, rather than having two eyes to be cast into hell fire.'


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