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The Terror (1963)

PG | | Horror , Thriller | 1964 (UK)
A young officer in Napoleon's Army pursues a mysterious woman to the castle of an elderly Baron.

Directors:

Roger Corman, Francis Ford Coppola (uncredited) | 5 more credits »

Writers:

Leo Gordon (screenplay), Jack Hill (screenplay)
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Boris Karloff ... Baron Victor Frederick Von Leppe / Eric
Jack Nicholson ... Lt. Andre Duvalier
Sandra Knight ... Helene / Ghost of Ilsa The Baroness Von Leppe
Dick Miller ... Stefan (as Richard Miller)
Dorothy Neumann ... Katrina, Witch / Eric's Mother
Jonathan Haze ... Gustaf
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Storyline

France, 18th century. Lieutenant Andre Duvalier (Jack Nicholson) has been accidentally separated from his regiment. He is wandering near the coast when he sees a young woman (Sandra Knight) and asks her for directions to Coldon, where he hopes to rejoin his regiment. But the woman doesn't answer, doesn't even greet him and walks away. Eventually she takes him towards the sea, where she disappears in rough water. Andre loses consciousness while trying to follow her, and is attacked by a bird and awakes in a house where an old woman (Dorothy Neumann) claims never to have seen the woman. After he leaves, he sees the woman again, and while trying to follow her, is saved by a man from certain death. Andre learns that in order to help the girl, he must go to castle of Baron Von Leppe (Boris Karloff), and when he arrives, Andre sees the woman looking out of a window. However, Baron Von Leppe is old and seems reluctant to let Andre in. He claims there's no woman in the castle, but shows Andre... Written by Arnoud Tiele (imdb@tiele.nl) and subs111

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

A diabolical plan of torture ... inconceivable ... unbelievable! See more »

Genres:

Horror | Thriller

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

1964 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

Lady of the Shadows See more »

Filming Locations:

Big Sur, California, USA See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Roger Corman Productions See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (DVD)

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

Roger Corman shot the castle scenes with Boris Karloff so quickly, that he didn't even bother to use slates to mark the beginnings of shots. Once he just had the actors walk downstairs one after another in succession, figuring he could later cut the single shot into separate shots that he could probably use somewhere. See more »

Goofs

When the castle floods, some of the stone floats. See more »

Quotes

Andre: That bird! It attacked me!
See more »

Alternate Versions

The original UK cinema version was cut by the BBFC to remove closeup shots of a bleeding face after the bird attack and a shot of a woman's rotting face during the climax. All later releases are uncut. See more »

Connections

Featured in 100 Years of Horror: Ghosts (1996) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
L'amour fou (Perhaps we're both mad!)
21 December 2006 | by mido505See all my reviews

Legend has it that Roger Corman filmed The Terror over a frantic four-day period; the truth is rather more interesting, as it undoubtedly contributed to the film's remarkable, incomparable, mesmerizing texture. After production wrapped on The Raven, Corman had Karloff, Nicholson, and the Raven's sets for four remaining days, so he hurriedly shot what he could before the walls came down and his stars departed. He then dispatched various acolytes, including Francis Coppola, Dennis Jakoub, Monte Hellman, Jack Hill, and Nicholson himself to produce enough footage to make The Terror into a complete feature. The result is a unique, fascinating, intensely visual and cinematic experiment that makes Corman's previous Poe adaptations look overly literary, plot-laden, and dialog-bound. The Terror may not be very logical, and its story will not withstand much scrutiny, but the film succeeds as a feverish nightmare of obsession and mad love. The photography, especially of the Big Sur locations, and of the fog bound studio cemetery sets, has an intense eerie romantic beauty, and Ronald Stein's remarkable score underscores The Terror's uncanny equation of desire and death. Is it cheap? Yes. Are there mistakes and screw ups? Sure. Does the continuity falter? Absolutely. None of this matters. The Terror is extraordinary in its palpable dream-like intensity. Oh, and by the way: an elderly, sick, practically crippled Boris Karloff, who could have easily tossed this off as an imposition, is terrific as always and a wonder to behold.


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