6.5/10
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Let's Scare Jessica to Death (1971)

PG-13 | | Drama, Horror, Mystery | 27 August 1971 (USA)
A recently institutionalized woman has bizarre experiences after moving into a supposedly haunted country farmhouse and fears she may be losing her sanity once again.

Director:

John D. Hancock (as John Hancock)

Writers:

John D. Hancock (as Ralph Rose), Lee Kalcheim (as Norman Jonas)
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Zohra Lampert ... Jessica
Barton Heyman ... Duncan
Kevin O'Connor Kevin O'Connor ... Woody
Gretchen Corbett ... The Girl
Alan Manson Alan Manson ... Sam Dorker
Mariclare Costello ... Emily
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Storyline

After a stint in a psychiatric facility Jessica, her husband and a friend move to remote farm they have recently purchased. There they find a young woman by the name of Emily living in the house and they invite her to stay. When Jessica goes for a swim in the lake, she sees a body just below the water's surface. When they go into the village to sell some old furniture, they learn that a woman by the name of Abigail Bishop drowned in the lake and her body was never found. Local folklore has that Abigail is now a vampire roaming the countryside. A mute blond girl leads her to the body of a dead man but the body is not there when Jessica goes for help. Jessica and those around begin to wonder if she is losing her mind. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Something is after Jessica. Something very cold, very wet... and very dead... See more »

Genres:

Drama | Horror | Mystery

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for terror/violence and some sensuality | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official site

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

27 August 1971 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

What Killed Sam Dorker? See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$180,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

Orville Stoeber, the music composer, taught Mariclare Costello (Emily) the song "Stay Forever" in his apartment during the filming of this movie. See more »

Goofs

Jessica is shown from the back at a gravestone just after the woman in white has appeared. Just before Duncan says, "Hey Jess, come on we've got to get moving," the stone she is at moves - it is not a real headstone. See more »

Quotes

Jessica: [voiceover, talking to herself] Don't tell them. Act normal.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in It Follows (2014) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Scared me 30 years ago and scares me now. Very effective.
14 December 2004 | by gwstephSee all my reviews

The scariest movie you will never see on TV. This movie should have been a hit. Since it wasn't, it should have 'cult' status. Why it doesn't, I don't know. Genre - horror. Sub-genre haunted house, return from the dead, psychopath, strange little town. Filmed on location in CT with that great "B" movie feel. The lack of special effects and gore make it all the more effective. Simple but amazingly good soundtrack. I saw this movie 30 years ago and it really haunted me. I found an import on DVD for which the quality is quite good. Many viewers see the movie as an enigma or riddle. Having seen it several times now I think the title says it all. Pay close attention to who either gets or almost gets killed. Why is the little town populated only by men? The actress playing Emily needs no makeup to look like just what she is playing in the movie. A few things about the movie don't hang together and the continuity might suffer a little. But have no doubt, it is one very scary and effective film.


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