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The Old Dark House (1932)

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Seeking shelter from a storm, five travelers are in for a bizarre and terrifying night when they stumble upon the Femm family estate.

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(from the novel by) (as J.B. Priestly), (screen play)
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1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
... Morgan
... Penderel
... Sir William Porterhouse
... Gladys (as Lillian Bond)
... Horace Femm
Eva Moore ... Rebecca Femm
... Philip Waverton
... Margaret Waverton
... Sir Roderick Femm (as John Dudgeon)
Brember Wills ... Saul Femm
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Storyline

Seeking shelter from a pounding rainstorm in a remote region of Wales, several travellers are admitted to a gloomy, foreboding mansion belonging to the extremely strange Femm family. Trying to make the best of it, the guests must deal with their sepulchral host, Horace Femm and his obsessive, malevolent sister Rebecca. Things get worse as the brutish manservant Morgan gets drunk, runs amuck and releases the long pent-up brother Saul, a psychotic pyromaniac who gleefully tries to destroy the residence by setting it on fire. Written by Doug Sederberg <vornoff@sonic.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Beware the night!


Certificate:

TV-G | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

20 October 1932 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El caserón de las sombras  »

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Box Office

Gross USA:

$25,678, 2 November 2017
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System Noiseless Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In the beginning Melvyn Douglas is singing "Singing in the Rain". That movie didn't come out until 1952, but the actual song came out in 1929. See more »

Goofs

Roger and Gladys go to a barn to get liquor from the car stored there during the driving rainstorm. When they are coming back to the house, there is a large puddle of water in front of the house but no rain is falling. Roger, carrying Gladys gets almost to the door when the water is turned back on. Rain pours near the door but not on the rest of the area in front of the house. See more »

Quotes

Rebecca Femm: What is it? What do they want?
Horace Femm: Allow me to introduce my sister, Miss Rebecca Femm.
Roger PenderelPhilip WavertonMargaret Waverton: How do you do?
Rebecca Femm: What are they doing here? What do they want?
Roger PenderelPhilip WavertonMargaret Waverton: How do you do?
Rebecca Femm: What did they say? What do they want? What are they doing here? What's all the fuss about? What?
Horace Femm: You must excuse my sister, she's a little deaf. In fact sometimes quite deaf.
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Crazy Credits

After the introductory credits there is a 'producer's note' (on some prints it appears before the studio logo) : 'Karloff, the mad butler in this production, is the same Karloff who created the part of the mechanical monster in "Frankenstein". We explain this to settle all disputes in advance, even though such disputes are a tribute to his great versatility.' But the current release (September 2017) from Cohen Media Group omits this credit completely. See more »

Connections

Featured in Cinemassacre's Monster Madness: The Mummy (1932) (2013) See more »

Soundtracks

Oh! Mr. Porter
(uncredited)
By George Le Brunn
Improvised on by Melvyn Douglas
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Ahead of Time
13 June 2018 | by See all my reviews

While driving in a stormy night on a lonely road in the countryside, Philip Waverton (Raymond Massey), his wife Margaret (Gloria Stuart), and Roger Penderel (Melvyn Douglas) seek shelter at a creepy old house. Horace (Ernest Thesiger) and his sister Rebecca Femm (Eva Moore) are reluctant but receive the travelers and warn that the butler Morgan (Boris Karloff) is a dangerous man when he drinks. When they have dinner, a man called Sir William Porterhouse (Charles Laughton) arrives in the house with his girlfriend Gladys DuCane (Lilian Bond) seeking shelter. Out of the blue, the light goes out and they split to get candles and lamps, while Roger and Gladys go to the car to get a bottle of whiskey. While they drink and talk together, the drunken Morgan attacks Margaret and Philip along a most unusual and bizarre night.

The Pre-Code "The Old Dark House" is a comedy horror film ahead of time in the style of "Haunted Honeymoon", "The Rocky Horror Picture Show" or "Young Frankenstein". There are funny (and also silly) moments and Roger falling in love and proposing the gold-digger Gladys is too naive. But the scenes in the car with the heavy storm are impressive. My vote is seven.

Title (Brazil): "A Casa Sinistra" ("The Sinister House")


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