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The City of the Dead (1960)

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A young college student arrives in a sleepy Massachusetts town to research witchcraft; during her stay at an eerie inn, she discovers a startling secret about the town and its inhabitants.

Director:

John Llewellyn Moxey (as John Moxey)

Writers:

George Baxt (screenplay), Milton Subotsky (story)
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Dennis Lotis ... Richard Barlow
Christopher Lee ... Alan Driscoll
Patricia Jessel ... Elizabeth Selwyn / Mrs. Newless
Tom Naylor Tom Naylor ... Bill Maitland
Betta St. John ... Patricia Russell
Venetia Stevenson ... Nan Barlow
Valentine Dyall ... Jethrow Keane
Ann Beach Ann Beach ... Lottie
Norman MacOwan Norman MacOwan ... Reverend Russell (as Norman Macowan)
Fred Johnson Fred Johnson ... The Elder
James Dyrenforth James Dyrenforth ... Garage Attendant (as Jimmy Dyrenforth)
Maxine Holden Maxine Holden ... Sue
William Abney William Abney ... Policeman
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Storyline

A young coed (Nan Barlow) uses her winter vacation to research a paper on witchcraft in New England. Her professor recommends that she spend time in a small village named Whitewood. He originally came from the village , he also recommends she stay at the "Raven's Inn," run by a Mrs. Newlis. When she arrives at Whitewood, she notices macabre happenings, Soon, things begin to happen in earnest, and she finds herself "marked" for sacrifice by the undead coven of witches. It seems that the innkeeper is actually the undead spirit of Elizabeth Selwyn, and the "guests" at the inn are the other witches who have come to celebrate the sacrifice on Candalmas Eve. As one of them said when Nan walked away, "HE will be PLEASED." Written by John A Kostecki <jak@wbst207v.xerox.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

300 years old! Human blood keeps them alive forever! See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

12 September 1962 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

City of the Dead See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

£45,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Vulcan Films See more »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

(uncut)

Sound Mix:

Mono (Westrex Recording System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Sections from the witch-burning scene at the beginning of the movie were used in the mockumentary Curse of the Blair Witch (1999). See more »

Goofs

The character played by Tom Naylor is called "Bill Maitland" in the dialogue but shown as "Tom Maitland" in the end credits. See more »

Quotes

Elizabeth Selwyn: I am Elizabeth Selwyn.
See more »

Alternate Versions

The original U.S print (titled "Horror Hotel") is around 2 minutes shorter than the "City Of The Dead" version, and is missing most of the cursing made by Elizabeth Selwyn to the villagers during the opening burning and some of the conversation between Driscoll and Barlow as they discuss belief in the supernatural. See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Andrew Klavan Show: Blaming Harvey's Victims (2017) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Surprisingly good! Atmospheric and imaginative witchcraft chiller.
9 November 2002 | by InfofreakSee all my reviews

'Horror Hotel' (sadly the copy I bought has this tacky title, which is the only thing I can fault about it) really surprised me at just how creepy and atmospheric it was. I was expecting some camp fun, but it is actually a very effective and inventive movie for such a cheap effort. The story sucks you in, and the acting for the most part is above average. Christopher Lee is billed as the star, which isn't exactly true, but he is excellent in his scenes, and Patricia Jessel is even better in a very enjoyable duel role. I also admire how director John Moxey (his movie debut. He also went on to make 'Circus Of Fear') was able to conjure up a spooky New England town with basically just a few sets and some fog. A great example of imaginative low budget horror movie making at its best! Highly recommended to fans of 'Carnival Of Souls', and 'Black Sunday'. 'Horror Hotel' isn't a great an achievement as either, but it shares some similarities in style and feel. This is one extremely underrated movie!


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