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The Old Dark House (1963)

An American who sells cars in England receives a mysterious invitation from an old, eccentric millionaire to visit his house in which he lives with his twin brother.

Director:

William Castle

Writers:

Robert Dillon (screenplay), J.B. Priestley (based on "The Old Dark House" by)
Reviews
1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Tom Poston ... Tom Penderel
Robert Morley ... Roderick Femm
Janette Scott ... Cecily Femm
Joyce Grenfell ... Agatha Femm
Mervyn Johns ... Potiphar Femm
Fenella Fielding ... Morgana Femm
Peter Bull ... Caspar & Jasper Femm
Danny Green ... Morgan Femm
John Harvey John Harvey ... Club Receptionist
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Storyline

An American who sells cars in England receives a mysterious invitation from an old, eccentric millionaire to visit his house in which he lives with his twin brother. Written by Volker Boehm

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

READY! SET! LAUGH! Join the fun in a nut-house of terror! (movie poster) See more »


Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »
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Details

Official Sites:

Hammer Films

Country:

UK | USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

31 October 1963 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

A Velha Casa Assombrada See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

(original cinema release) (cut)

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound Recording)

Color:

Black and White | Color (Eastmancolor) (uncredited)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The film was originally passed as an uncut 'X' by the BBFC in April 1963 and an accompanying poster produced, though for various reasons the film was not released in the UK until 1966. It was then passed with heavy cuts to remove some of the darker elements with an 'A' certificate and released in September 1966. The 1996 Encore video version (now rated PG) featured the original uncut print. See more »

Goofs

When Caspar loses at cards in the opening scene, he pushed four stacks of chips towards the old lady who won; the stacks fall over. In the next shot the croupier is pushing the now upright stacks towards the lady and one falls over. In the next shot the lady pulls four upright stacks towards her. See more »

Quotes

Tom Penderel: You, uh... why, you must be very lonely. Well, I mean, uh, all alone...
Morgana Femm: Oh, you have no idea. Every night in this house, with just a whole family of Femms.
See more »

Alternate Versions

This film was filmed in Eastmancolor, however it was released in American theaters in black and white. Color prints were released to American television, however. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Password All-Stars: Peggy Cass vs. Tom Poston (1962) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
An old, dark and disappointing house!
5 February 2007 | by The_VoidSee all my reviews

Well, I'm a big fan of William Castle and of Hammer Horror, so I figured that this meeting between the two would be damn good. William Castle's The Old Dark House is not a remake of the classic James Whale film, and this is actually unfortunate because if it was, it no doubt would have been a better film. Instead, what we have is a plot involving an American car dealer who goes to an old house after receiving an invitation from a friend of his, who he shares a house with. While there, he is introduced to a host of strange characters, as well as a plot involving a huge inheritance. The film is obviously intended to be a comedy, but it would seem that Castle should have stuck to horror as little in this film is actually funny, and I was really bored before the ending - not something I expect from William Castle! Considering the film focuses on an 'old dark house', there's very little in the way of atmosphere and I'm guessing that Castle wanted this film to appeal to a younger audience, and for that reason - there's not much here for the older movie fan. The plot rambles on until the conclusion and by then I didn't really care what happened. Overall, this is a sub standard William Castle film if ever I saw one. Straight-Jacket, Homicidal, Mr Sardonicus, The Tingler, House on Haunted Hill and 13 Ghosts come highly recommended - this one doesn't!


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