Francis Barnard goes to Spain, when he hears his sister Elizabeth has died. Her husband Nicholas Medina, the son of the brutest torturer of the Spanish Inquisition, tells him she has died of a blood disease, but Francis finds this hard to believe. After some investigating he finds out that it was extreme fear that was fatal to his sister and that she may have been buried alive! Strange things then start to happen in the Medina castle.Written by
Leon Wolters <wolters@strw.LeidenUniv.nl>
After the mysterious death of Elizabeth Barnard Medina (Barbara Steele), her brother Francis Barnard (John Kerr) travels from London to Spain and without previous notice he arrives at the castle of her husband Nicholas Medina (Vincent Price). He is received by Nicholas' sister Catherine Medina (Luana Anders) that invites Francis to have dinner with her brother and her.
Francis learns that their father Sebastian Medina was a cruel torturer of the Spanish Inquisition and Nicholas is a traumatized man that has witnessed the murder of his uncle Bartolome (Charles Victor) and his adulterer mother Isabella (Mary Menzies) being tortured and killed by his father when he was a kid. During the dinner, the family's friend Doctor Charles Leon (Antony Carbone) unexpectedly arrives and Francis discovers that his sister died of heart attack after visiting the torture chamber in the dungeons. Soon the place is haunted by strange events and Nicholas suspects of his servants Maximillian (Patrick Westwood) and Maria (Lynette Bernay) but Francis is convinced that Nicholas is the responsible for the death of his sister.
"Pit and the Pendulum" is one of the best Roger Corman's movies despite the poor scenario that shakes in many scenes. The last time that I saw this movie was on 16 November 1999 on cable television and today I have just watched it again on DVD. The creepy story of Edgar Allan Poe is still engaging even when the viewer watches more than two times. My vote is eight.
Title (Brazil): "A Mansão do Terror" ("The Manor of Horror")
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