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Information

Year
1945
Runtime
103 min.
Directors
Charles Crichton, Alberto Cavalcanti
Genre
Horror
Rating *
7.7
Votes *
6,360
Checks
2,262
Favs
176
Dislikes
21
Favs/checks
7.8% (1:13)
Favs/dislikes
8:1
* View IMDb information

Top comments

  1. dombrewer's avatar

    dombrewer

    Extremely influential and entertaining portmanteau style horror film from Ealing Studios - the first British film of its kind in the 1940s following the ban on production of horror films during the second world war. Part directed by some of top talents of British cinema - Alberto Cavalcanti ("Went the Day Well"), Charles Crichton ("The Lavender Hill Mob"), Basil Dearden ("The League of Gentlemen") and Robert Hamer ("Kind Hearts and Coronets"), it features short supernatural stories that have all since become horror staples - a premonition that averts a fatal accident, an unusual encounter revealed to be supernatural after the event, possession via a malevolent item, a ventriloquist's puppet that may not be as innocent as it first appears, and a man doomed to act out his nightmare over and over again.
    For the most part, even though the accents are clipped and the scares mostly suggested and subtle, it really works thanks to excellent pacing, strong performances and some brilliant cinematography.
    The inclusion of the comical tale of two golfers, one haunted by the other after cheating on a vital match to decide who will take the hand of the woman they both love is an odd inclusion, featuring the renamed popular double act of Charters and Caldicott from "The Lady Vanishes" played by Basil Radford and Naunton Wayne. It's well done but unfortunately lifts the tension expertly built up by the Haunted Mirror episode - possibly the best of the stories - before leading into the most famous segment featuring Michael Redgrave's twitchy, driven ventriloquist Maxwell Frere and his unpleasantly subversive dummy Hugo Fitch. The real mark of genius is how spoiler If you want some old fashioned scares and some masterful examples of subtle suspense this is a must see.
    7 years ago
  2. TalkingElvish's avatar

    TalkingElvish

    Fantastically moody and stagey in a really good way. The acting, structure and stories are so uniformly strong that the slightly dated script still works wonderfully. Highly recommended for anyone who has ever watched more than one episode of the Twilight Zone in a row. A truly pioneering film. 5 years 5 months ago
  3. God's avatar

    God

    Wouldn't I? 4 years 9 months ago
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In 7 official lists

  1. This movie ranks #40 in IMDb's Horror Top 50
    IMDb's Horror Top 50's icon

    IMDb's Horror Top 50

    40
  2. This movie ranks #51 in They Shoot Zombies, Don't They?
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    They Shoot Zombies, Don'…

    51
  3. This movie ranks #70 in 100 Best British films
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    100 Best British films

    70
  4. This movie ranks #162 in 501 Must See Movies
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    501 Must See Movies

    162
  5. This movie ranks #164 in Halliwell's Top 1000: The Ultimate Movie Countdown
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    Halliwell's Top 1000: Th…

    164
  6. This movie ranks #229 in The Guardian's 1000 Films to See Before You Die
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    The Guardian's 1000 Film…

    229
  7. This movie ranks #313 in 500 Essential Cult Movies
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    500 Essential Cult Movies

    313
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