A search for a winning lottery ticket in his dead father's grave causes Sardonicus' face to freeze in a horrible grimace, until he forces a doctor to treat his affliction--with even more ... See full summary »
Reclusive Dr. Zorba has died and left his eerie mansion to his penniless nephew Cyrus Zorba and his family. Along with the house, the Zorba family has also inherited the occultist's collection of 12 ghosts, who can only be seen through Zorba's special goggles. The family members, their lives at risk upon the discovery that Dr. Zorba's fortune lies hidden somewhere in the house, receive aid from unexpected quarters as the threat to their lives is revealed.Written by
Doug Sederberg <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Film was released in 1960 - in a 1960 episode of "Leave it to Beaver" older brother Wally mentions seeing a haunted house movie with "about 15 ghosts running around" See more »
At about 14:10 it is evident that a puppeteer is manipulating the fly that drops down into frame to pester Mrs. Zorba as if it were a spider rather than a fly. Mrs. Zorba shoos the fly from her face and it "bounces" over to the ghost glasses where it is "zapped" by the power of the frames. The puppeteer allows the fly to bounce gently on the frame so that it settles neatly and visibly on the glasses. See more »
There's a witch in the house. Ring the bell; she'll answer.
[Ben rings the bell, Medea answers]
What'd you do that for? You should've let the Witch answer it.
You need to stop calling her that or she'll cut your tongue out.
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The original version was shot in black and white, but included a few color-tinted sequences. The ghosts were colored in red and shot on a blue background. These sequences were preceded by the message "Use Viewer" and followed by "Remove Viewer". In the prologue, director William Castle explain to the audience how the Illusion-O Ghost Viewer works (for the ghost sequences), while in the epilogue he invites the audience to bring the Ghost Viewer home to try to find more ghosts with it. See more »
Schlockmeister William Castle's "13 Ghosts" is one of his classic horror films of the late 1950s/early 1960s. Castle was known, at least during this time, for gimmicks - the gimmick for this movie was special glasses to see the ghosts.
Absent-minded paleontologist Cyrus Zorba (Donald Woods), not to be confused with the Dr. Zorba played by Sam Jaffe on the Ben Casey TV show, inherits his eccentric uncle's house. His uncle Plato Zorba collected ghosts. 11 ghosts, including a killer Italian chef, a headless lion tamer and his lion that for some reason is split in half, a few flaming ghosts, and, for ghost #12, the late Plato Zorba.
Uncle Plato (apparently suffocated in a canopy bed) was discovered by his housekeeper Elaine Zacharides, played by the late, great Margaret Hamilton (best known as the Wicked Witch of the West in "The Wizard of Oz". Before Uncle Plato died, he converted everything he owned into cash and hid it in the house. His attorney, Ben Rush (Martin Milner) knows that there is a substantial amount of money, but he doesn't know where it is.
There are a few interesting things to ratchet up the scare factor - Ouija board that tells the Zorbas and Ben that one of them will be harmed, different ghosts causing objects to float in the air, these weird specs that light up inside the frames, a creepy housekeeper, a séance, and a hidden stash of cash.
Filmed in "Illusion-O". It's not a great film and by no stretch of the imagination is this on the same level as many other films from 1960, like "Spartacus", "The Apartment", or even "The Bellboy, but it definitely has its place in history.
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