The Attic (1980)

PG  |   |  Drama, Thriller, Horror  |  October 1980 (USA)
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 5.4/10 from 467 users  
Reviews: 18 user | 12 critic

A librarian devotes her life to caring for her wheelchair-bound tyrannical father after being stood up at the altar. She fantasizes about causing deaths of the men who most wronged her and ... See full summary »


, (uncredited)


(screenplay), (screenplay)
0Check in

On Disc

at Amazon

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Blackout (1978)
Action | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.8/10 X  

A black comedy of violent criminals who terrorize apartment dwellers during New York's 1977 power blackout.

Director: Eddy Matalon
Stars: James Mitchum, Robert Carradine, Belinda Montgomery
Horror | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4/10 X  

The murder of a Wax Museum proprietor and some other strange goings-on in the vicinity prompt a police investigator to determine whether the killer is one of the principles who wants to own... See full summary »

Director: Georg Fenady
Stars: Ray Milland, Elsa Lanchester, Maurice Evans
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  

A young couple is trapped in a remote town where a dangerous religious cult of children believe everyone over the age of 18 must be killed.

Director: Fritz Kiersch
Stars: Peter Horton, Linda Hamilton, R.G. Armstrong
The Attic (Video 2007)
Horror | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 3.5/10 X  

Emma and her family are unhappy after moving to her house; one day she went to the attic and found someone who looked like her and began haunting her.

Director: Mary Lambert
Stars: Elisabeth Moss, Catherine Mary Stewart, John Savage
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.2/10 X  

The South African businessman David Swansey is delivering illegal German helicopters to Rhodesia. That makes the patriot Gideon Marunga an angry man.

Director: James Fargo
Stars: Richard Harris, Richard Roundtree, Joan Collins
Crime | Drama | Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

Young Terry Lambert returns home from serving a prison term for a gang-rape he was forced to participate in. He seeks revenge on his lawyer and the girl who framed him. But his real problem... See full summary »

Director: Curtis Harrington
Stars: Ann Sothern, John Savage, Ruth Roman
Cave In! (TV Movie 1983)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.4/10 X  

A group of strangers become entrapped in a cave after it collapses. A fugitive among them claims a hostage as leverage for means of escape.

Director: Georg Fenady
Stars: Dennis Cole, Susan Sullivan, Leslie Nielsen
Tales from the Crypt (1989–1996)
Comedy | Crime | Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

Tales of horror based on the gruesome EC horror comics of the 1950's.

Stars: John Kassir, Roy Brocksmith, Miguel Ferrer
Certificate: GP Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

When the daughter of Simon Crawford, a successful barrister, is killed in what seems to be a hit and run accident, and the police are unable to find the culprit, Crawford swears that he ... See full summary »

Director: Ray Milland
Stars: Ray Milland, Sylvia Syms, Felix Aylmer
The Darker Side of Terror (TV Movie 1979)
Drama | Horror | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5/10 X  

When a scientist at a research lab is passed over for a promotion, he creates a clone of himself to attempt to seduce the wife of the man who got the job.

Director: Gus Trikonis
Stars: Robert Forster, Adrienne Barbeau, Ray Milland
Our Family Business (TV Movie 1981)
Action | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

A syndicate mob boss (Sam Wanamaker) doesn't realize that his eldest son Gep (Ted Danson) has been informing to the police on the family's dealings in exchange for protection, while Gep's ... See full summary »

Director: Robert L. Collins
Stars: Steve Peck, Deborah Carney, Ted Danson
Adventure | Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 3.3/10 X  

A serpent, created by radioactivity, threatens a Spanish coastal town.

Director: Amando de Ossorio
Stars: Timothy Bottoms, Taryn Power, Jared Martin


Cast overview, first billed only:
Louise Elmore
Mrs. Perkins
Fern Barry ...
Mrs. Mooney
Marjorie Eaton ...
Mrs. Fowler
Dick Welsbacher ...
Missing Persons Agent
Joyce Cavarozzi ...
Michael LeRoy Rhodes ...
Sailor (as Michael Rhodes)
Ron Luce ...
Young Robert
Phil Speary ...
Travel Agent
Patrick Brennan ...
David Perkins
Mark Andrews ...
Marty, Gardener
Terry Troutt ...


A librarian devotes her life to caring for her wheelchair-bound tyrannical father after being stood up at the altar. She fantasizes about causing deaths of the men who most wronged her and finds joy only with her pet monkey. Her monkey disappears and a shocking past is revealed. Written by Bill Smith <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


13 steps to TERROR! See more »


Drama | Thriller | Horror


PG | See all certifications »




Release Date:

October 1980 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El desván  »

Filming Locations:

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Getting director George Edwards to Wichita, Kansas for filming proved to be a difficult and costly process. Edwards feared flying so he started out to Kansas on a train. However, Edwards fell ill on board and ended up taking a cab from Arkansas to Kansas afterward. It cost $1,500 dollars. See more »


In the scene where Louise pushes her father, played by Ray Milland down the hill, you can see that Milland's stunt double looks nothing like him. He is a man with brown hair and a beard, when Milland was completely bald in the film. See more »


Referenced in Rate It X (1986) See more »


The Ticket
Music by Hod David Schudson
Lyrics by Maggie Thompson
Performed by George Ball
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Works if you're in the right mood...
15 June 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

This is NOT a horror film. Like its "prequel," "The Killing Kind," it's more a psychological study of how nasty parents can really mess up their children's lives, and how ironically nasty life can be.

Louise, brilliantly played by the wonderful, under-utilized and now-departed actress Carrie Snodgrass, is a spinster librarian with a hateful, controlling, wheelchair-bound dad played with unashamed evil glee by Ray Milland. Louise is depressed beyond belief--she's never gotten over the loss of her fiancée who disappeared 19 years ago, or an accident that led to her father being in a wheelchair. She does anything she can to cope: attempts suicide, masturbates, has a one-night stand, plans vacations she'll never have the courage to take, retires from her job and even takes care of a chimpanzee. But she's not a balanced person--she constantly fantasizes about rejecting her abusive and mean father and loses track of reality on occasion. She was admits to being involved in a library arson, and that she'd do it again. She drinks a little too. But things seem to be going her way at last when Louise makes a friend out of a co-worker, a sincere young woman who boosts Louise's confidence, and gives her hope, sets her on the road to recovering her self-esteem and her life.

But, as in "Carrie," happiness is not in the cards for Louise, and it all comes to an end in a series of ironic surprises, and a stormy conclusion in a creepy attic where unpleasant truths are finally revealed.

This is not a horror movie--it's not scary or gory at all. You have to be in the right mood to enjoy this movie. You have to be depressed, and feeling hateful, and old, and grief over the loss of someone or something you love to really get into this movie. You have to feel like the world is an unfair, cruel place to live, and be interested in a movie that confirms your worst fears...the world IS against you! There are some wonderful moments of black humor--the secret Ray Milland has been hiding about his health is somehow so cruel it's almost funny, and listening to Carrie Snodgrass break out of character and scream is a wonderful experience. Some of Louise's fantasies show her screaming or acting sly and seductive in that unusual voice of hers, giving just a hint of what Ms. Snodgrass might have delivered had more roles come her way. Ray Milland's hatred of the "Dicky the chimp" is hilarious, even as it degrades a once great actor in his declining years to be in such a role in, basically, an exploitation film. But I can't stop laughing when he first sees Dickey..."What in God's name is THAT!??"

It's not a great film, and hard to categorize; I have no idea who would have put up money for something like this, let alone how they got the actors they did. It's more sad than scary, and you really have to be in the right mood to watch a character who's life was pretty rotten almost get better, then fall into a bottomless pit of hopelessness.

Or maybe the implication is that Louise went on after this movie, and was able to start her life over, having broken the spell of the past that kept her from moving forward. Somehow, I highly doubt it though...!

8 of 9 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Bad, Bad Librarian movielibrarians
stay in the basement videoasst
Incest? g24601
if you liked the attic................ . robbyyashowtime
Can someone spoil the ending of this for me? XeoImdb
BORING! laurieny
Discuss The Attic (1980) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: