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It Happened at Nightmare Inn (1973)
"Una vela para el diablo" (original title)

 -  Horror  -  1973 (Spain)
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Two old maid sisters are running a little family hotel in Spain. They are very religious and the moral of the foreign tourist girl is too much for them, they start to kill them.


(as Eugene Martin)
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Cast overview:
Laura Barkley
Aurora Bautista ...
Esperanza Roy ...
Víctor Alcázar ...
Eduardo (as Vic Winner)
Lone Fleming ...
Helen Miller
Blanca Estrada ...
Norma (as Blanche Estrada)
Loreta Tovar ...
May (as Loretta Tovar)
Montserrat Julió ...
Beatriz (as Julia Montserrat)
Fernando Villena ...
Fernando Hilbeck ...
Charley Pineiro ...


Two old maid sisters are running a little family hotel in Spain. They are very religious and the moral of the foreign tourist girl is too much for them, they start to kill them. Written by Erik Adelfred <>

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1973 (Spain)  »

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It Happened at Nightmare Inn  »

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User Reviews

Entertaining shocker about vicious sisters terrorizing a guesthouse
22 March 2010 | by See all my reviews

This is a grisly, superbly amusing Gothic horror story with vivid performances from the mature ladies, they are admirably enigmatic and mysterious . It's a Spanish classic of the chilly grotesque with awesome duo, a convincingly gruesome twosome as spinsters, Aurora Bautista and Esperanza Roy as the weird house keepers. The sisters living together in a gloomy boarding house hire rooms to tourists and develop an awful habit only murder them. They portray fanatic aging sisters , when the demented Aurora learns of sexpot boarders she kill them. Meanwhile Judy Geeson takes a room in hopes of solving the mystery of disappearing her sister, Loreta Tovar as the murder victim at the start. Bautista plays her part to the hilt, unafraid of Eugenio Martin's unsympathetic camera and the viciousness of her character .

The picture packs atmospheric blending of eerie thrills and creepy chills combined with a terrific finale. It displays lots of guts and blood but it seems pretty mild compared to today's gore feasts. It's an unrelenting shock-feast laced with nice acting by the two Spanish stars that deserves its cult status. Watch for Aurora Bautista who makes an indelible mark on the movie as the deranged and religious keeper. Judy Geeson, too, is excellent as tourist investigating the strange events in the gloomy mansion. Lively secondary cast is frankly cool, formed by Spanish support casting, as Fernando Hilbeck, Vic Winner , Lone Fleming and Blanca Estrada , both taking early film roles. Bone-chilling musical score by Antonio Perez Olea. Passable photography with juicy atmosphere by Jose Aguayo, but unfortunately turns too much murky in some video print . The picture belongs to sub-genre about killings committed by aging spinsters women such as the classic ¨What ever happened to Baby Jane ? (1962) ¨by Robert Aldrich with Bette Davis and Joan Crawford, ¨Huss, Huss, sweet Charlotte (1965)¨ by Aldrich with Bette Davis and Olivia De Havilland and ¨Whatever happened to aunt Alice ? (1969)¨by Lee H Katzin with Geraldine Page and Ruth Gordon, among others.

The motion picture is professionally directed by Eugenio Martin or Gene Martin. He's a horror movies expert(Hypnosis, A candle for the devil, The fourth Mrs Anderson) and Spaghetti Western(Pancho Villa, Bounty hunter, Bad man's river). Rating : Acceptable horror movie, well worth watching. This macabre movie thriller that commits viewers to sit chewing their fingernails for more than ninety minutes will appeal to Euro-horror fans.

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