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The Changeling (1980)

R | | Horror | 28 March 1980 (USA)
A man staying at a secluded historical mansion finds himself being haunted by the presence of a spectre.

Director:

Writers:

(story), (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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10 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Madeleine Sherwood ...
Mrs. Norman (as Madeleine Thornton-Sherwood)
Helen Burns ...
Frances Hyland ...
Ruth Springford ...
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James B. Douglas ...
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Security Guard
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Storyline

It was the perfect family vacation for composer John Russell and his family when a freak automobile accident claims the lives of his wife and daughter. Consumed by grief, John, at the request of friends, rents an old turn of the century house. Mammoth in size, the house seems all the room that John needs to write music and reflect. He does not realize that he is not alone in the house. He shares it with the spirit of a murdered child who has homed in on John's despair and uses him to uncover decades of silence and deceit. With the help of Claire Norman, the one who aided John in procuring the house, they race to find the answers and soon learn that a devious and very powerful man guards them. Written by Vampire-Sharpshooter

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

"How did you die, Joseph...? Did you die in this house...? Why do you remain...?" See more »

Genres:

Horror

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

28 March 1980 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

House on Chessman Park  »

Box Office

Budget:

CAD 7,600,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This movie was the first film to win Best Picture in the Canadian Film Awards after its name was changed to the Genie Awards. The film was nominated for ten Genies and won eight. See more »

Goofs

(at around 10 mins) When Claire is showing John the piano room the camera moves backwards and it reveals the shadow of the camera. The camera also touches the piece of cloth covering the piano and you can see it moving. See more »

Quotes

De Witt: I understand you lost your wife and daughter a little while ago. Maybe it shook you up. Maybe too much... *Maybe*, you need help.
John Russell: I'd like you to leave now...
De Witt: [making his threat a bit more clear] We can see that you get it... do you understand what I'm saying?
John Russell: [points to the door] Out! Now!
De Witt: [pressing] Listen to me, Russell! You've got something of the Senator's... he wants it back. It's a little gold medal, a family heirloom, he lost it. He thinks *you've* got it.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Ring (2002) See more »

Soundtracks

Symphony #1 in C minor, Opus 68
Composed by Johannes Brahms (as Brahms)
Performed by The Vancouver Symphony Orchestra
Conducted by Kazuyoshi Akiyama
See more »

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User Reviews

 
A powerfully shocking movie if you let it be
10 October 2003 | by (Hope B.C. Canada) – See all my reviews

I first saw 'The Changeling' in the mid-eighties and it has lost none of its edge. A few of the reviews I see below seem to be written by those who have read glowing reviews but just didn't get it: Comparisons with 'The Exorcist', a story of demonic possession, are inappropriate. This movie isn't a visual shock feast nor a gore fest, this is a powerful psychological drama. The penultimate ghost story. If you just sit back in a defensive posture and challenge the movie to scare you, you will lose out completely. If however you choose to get involved, you will find yourself going for one hell of a ride. Few scenes in moviedom rival the poignancy, for instance, of the disbelieving George C. Scott character when he is reviewing the tape of the seance and comes upon the inescapable evidence that there IS a paranormal presence in the house. Here I will make my own inappropriate comparison: In the context of this story, Scotts ultimately human and believable response and the collapse that follows is far scarier than Exorcist's Reagan spewing green puke, by a long shot.

And the little girl going alone, summoned into the haunted room in her house at night? Forget about it. My hair stands on end.

If 'The Changeling', watched at night doesn't give you a fright, then there are at least six 'Hallowe'en' movies on the rack that should suit your particular needs. The Changeling is something else: the fear of the spiritually macabre.


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