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Revenge in the House of Usher (1983)

 |  Horror  |  6 May 1988 (France)
3.1
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Ratings: 3.1/10 from 300 users  
Reviews: 17 user | 12 critic

Dr. Alan Harker receives an invitation and arrives at the house of his former professor at the Prague University, Roderic Usher, who lives with his housekeeper Helen in an old castle. Dr. ... See full summary »

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Cast

Credited cast:
Howard Vernon ...
...
Alan Harker (as Robert Foster)
...
Maria, the Housekeeper
Fata Morgana ...
Edmunda, Usher's Wife
Ana Galán ...
Ana, the Maid
Antonio Marín ...
Mathias (Spanish version)
Daniel White ...
Dr. Seward (as Daniel Villiers)
José Llamas ...
Adrien, the Stable Boy
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Françoise Blanchard ...
Melissa (French version)
Helena Garret ...
First Victim
Flavia Hervás ...
Murdered Girl
Analía Ivars ...
Caged Girl (French version) (as Joan Virly)
Olivier Mathot ...
Morpho (French version)
Valerie Russel ...
Caged Girl (French version)
Jean Tolzac ...
Mathias (French version)
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Storyline

Dr. Alan Harker receives an invitation and arrives at the house of his former professor at the Prague University, Roderic Usher, who lives with his housekeeper Helen in an old castle. Dr. Usher is insane, living with ghosts, and invites his former student Harker to proceed with his research. He tells to Harker that when his daughter Melissa died many years ago, he had developed a means to reanimate her using the blood of prostitutes. Along many years, Dr. Usher and his assistant Morpho kidnapped and killed many young women to keep Melissa alive. But when Harker meets Dr. Seward, who is the doctor of Dr. Usher, he explains that Dr. Usher is delusional. What is the truth about Dr. Usher and his secret? Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

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Horror

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Details

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Release Date:

6 May 1988 (France)  »

Also Known As:

Zombie 5  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (censored)

Sound Mix:

Color:

| (Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Several scenes in black and white from "The Awful Dr. Orlof" (1962) were used in the third cut of the film as flashbacks of a young Usher, since Usher and Orlof were interpreted by the same actor, Howard Vernon. See more »

Connections

Version of Fall of the House of Usher (2014) See more »

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User Reviews

 
You could sit through worse
25 September 2005 | by (Richmond, VA) – See all my reviews

Let's look at two movies, both of which have as their subject matter a man haunted by images of his dead wife. Both films are photographed by their directors, and both star highly respected character actors. The first film is a remake of classic, and the second incorporates lengthy scenes from a classic. The first film cost around $47,000,000; the second, around $1.98. The first film is Steven Soderbergh's remake of Solaris; the second is Jess Franco's Revenge in the House of Usher. Guess which one is better?

Revenge in the House of Usher is director Franco's apology for, and commentary upon, his first breakthrough hit, the groundbreaking and highly influential The Awful Dr. Orloff. In that film Orloff was a Sadean Superman, perverse and transgressive, taking horrific delight in his bloodthirsty usurpation of traditional values. Here, transmogrified into Dr. Usher, he is reduced to a blithering and doddering old man, tormented by the images of the women that he has sacrificed to his appalling morality. Franco has often been accused of sharing Orloff's extreme misogyny, but anyone familiar with his work will know that Franco was alway's on the women's side. Franco makes clear that Orloff/Usher's 'project', his desire to resurrect his disfigured daughter, Melissa, is only a pretext, a trigger, a spur, to his grotesquely Sadean 'transvaluation of all values'. Appropriately, Melissa becomes just another anonymous tortured body; when revived by the blood of Orloff/Usher's victims, Melissa can only writhe in excruciating pain before lapsing back into blissful unconsciousness. Clearly, the tormenting spectre of Orloff/Usher's wife, whether real or merely Orloff/Usher's per fervid imagining, reproaching her husband for his dreadful treatment of women, is Franco's judgment upon the character that put him on the cinematic map.

Revenge in the House of Usher has taken a lot of abuse on this site, rather unfairly, in my opinion. Image Entertainment's DVD restores Franco's impressive, if somewhat erratic, visual style; and Howard Vernon, as Usher/Orloff, and Linay Romay, as his housekeeper, give excellent, committed performances. Yes, the film is slow, poverty stricken, and lacking in nudity and gore, but it is about something rather important, if only you, the viewer, will pay attention. There is a sensibility at work here, allied with considerable technical skill, that insists on persevering beyond all financial and other material limitations. It's a hell of a lot better than watching Ocean's 12 again.


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