Polio breaks out in Rio de Janeiro, the serum is in Santiago and there's only one way to get the medicine where it's desperately needed: flown in by daring pilots who risk the treacherous weather and forbidding peaks of the Andes.
Emily Gault arrives at the Carrell mansion determined to rekindle an old relationship with Guy Carrell, despite the disapproval of his sister, Kate. Guy overcomes his all-consuming fear of being buried alive long enough to marry Emily but soon becomes obsessed again, building a crypt designed to guarantee that he will not fall prey to his most dreaded nightmare. Trying to prove that he has been cured of his phobia, he opens his father's tomb and is shocked into a catatonic state. His worst fears are realized as he is lowered into a grave and covered over, apparently never to learn that the treachery of someone very dear to him was directly responsible for his predicament.Written by
Doug Sederberg <email@example.com>
Roger Corman was having a minor dispute with American International. He decided to do this "Poe" picture elsewhere. He was able to get financing from Pathe Labs (which wanted to go into distribution). When Samuel Z. Arkoff learned of this, he traveled to New York to talk with the owner of Pathe Labs. Arkoff felt that Pathe was stepping into American International's business. Pathe's was not moved until Arkoff pointed out that American International was one of Pathe Labs' largest customers and that if it was going into competition with AIP, all of AIP's lab work would be pulled. Pathe sold the production to American International before principal photography began. See more »
When about to show his guests the cup of poison, Guy refers to this as the coup de grace, but mispronounces it as "coup de gras" (as in "foie gras" or "Mardi Gras"). It is very unlikely that a well educated English grandee such as Guy would make such a mistake. See more »
Can you possibly conceive it. The unendurable oppression of the lungs, the stifling fumes of the earth, the rigid embrace of the coffin, the blackness of absolute night and the silence, like an overwhelming sea.
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Of all the great Roger Corman's movies based on Edgar Allan Poe's stories this one has maybe left in the shadow of those starring Vincent Price. In a way this one stays a little closer to the spirit of Poe, thanks to Ray Milland's well crafted and more serious acting style. He isn't as grand and hammy as Price and adds a bit more heavier drama in his portrayal of a perfect gentleman and a manically paranoid mind. And if you want to see Milland go for one better in a Corman film, see 'X -The Man with the X-Ray Eyes'.
Once again Corman has succeeded to make his film seem fancier and more expensive than it really was. I've always admired the production values in these films. In spite of repeating many of the same themes and tricks over again they always deliver fun and good value. The tight and atmospheric sets nicely express and support the sense of paranoia, madness and give a feeling of altered state of consciousness. Although, a kind of a comic book version of Poe it is, it does give me the same joy and occasional light creeps than the original stories. The theme of getting buried alive and the following madness is of course repeated many times during these films and stories. But as it is here the actual main theme and motive for the character, the treatment it gets is to my mind the most dramatic and probably the best.
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