Wednesday, November 20, 2013

The Haunted House of Horror


(1969) **1/2

Chris (Frankie Avalon) and his bored friends decide to leave a party to explore a local “haunted” house and hold a séance.  When the séance fails to provide any entertainment the gang does the sensible thing and all split up to explore the house.  Soon one of the hooligans is stabbed to death by an unseen assailant.  Not wishing to attract any negative attention from the police given their questionable records they decide to hide the body and leave and never to speak of the incident again.  Unfortunately this sensible plan backfires when one of the friends leaves a lighter behind with her name on it.  As the police begin to question them the friends decide to return to the scene of the crime in order to find “clues”.  This proves to be a bad decision as they learn that the killer is still among them.


It was refreshing to seen Frankie Avalon play against type as a hooligan trying to beat a drug charge but perhaps a mistake to cast him as a representative of the groovy 60s subterranean scene given his body of 1950s work up to that point (“How to Stuff a Bikini”, really?).  Despite the title nothing “haunted” or supernatural occurs in this film which ends up being more of a murder mystery than anything else.  Following the initial murder nothing really happens until the climax when the killer is revealed.  The Haunted House of Horror includes two very bloody scenes that were apparently the bloodiest ever seen on film up to that point.  A fun idea with poor execution despite a fairly engaging cast.  Skip it.


6 comments:

DCD said...

Skip it I will! Bummer it wasn't better.

AC said...

so even the bloodiest scenes to date don't salvage it? too bad.

Octopunk said...

"It was refreshing to seen Frankie Avalon play against type as a hooligan trying to beat a drug charge but perhaps a mistake to cast him as a representative of the groovy 60s subterranean scene given his body of 1950s work up to that point.” Ha!

Yeah, that is too bad. Film history is a fickle mistress.

Crystal Math said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Johnny Sweatpants said...

I have no problem skipping this either. As a general rule of thumb I tend to avoid Frankie Avalon vehicles. And the title "The Haunted House of Horror" is a about as lazy as it gets.

Catfreeek said...

Wouldn't it have been so much better if the murderer turned out to be Annette?