I love a good ghost story I mean come on who doesn’t right? So without further ado here’s my The Haunting (1963) Blu-ray Review.
- The Haunting (1963) Import
- Genre: Horror
- Directed by Robert Wise
- Running Time: 112 Mins
- UK Rating N/A
- Discs: 1
- Released By Warner Bros (Region Free)
- Blu-ray Released: 15th October 2013
The Hill House has stood for 90 years but all has not been well over those years with several strange deaths occurring. Dr. John Markway (Richard Johnson) wants to find out if there is any truth to the rumours that the house is haunted. He invites Eleanor Lance (Julie Harris) and Theodora (Claire Bloom) to help him find out. Mrs. Sanderson the person responsible for Hill House agrees to allow a paranormal investigation but insists Luke accompanies them.
Eleanor is the first to arrive and she seems to be very much in tune with the house, what will they find as they begin their stay at Hill House?
Style / Direction
The film is directed by Robert Wise with the cinematography handled by Davis Boulton. The film is shot in black and white and uses some impressive camera angles to create a feeling of foreboding.
Music / Audio Effects
The music is composed by Humphrey Searle and is decidedly creepy.
Acting / Characters
Good acting performance by the entire main cast with Julie Harris as Eleanor “Nell” Lance really putting in a convincing performance as a woman in danger of losing her mind.
Richard Johnson plays Dr John Markway and is the one that attempts to bring some semblance of calm and authority to proceedings.
- Julie Harris as Eleanor “Nell” Lance
- Claire Bloom as Theodora “Theo”
- Richard Johnson as Dr. John Markway
- Russ Tamblyn as Luke Sanderson
- Fay Compton as Mrs. Sanderson
- Rosalie Crutchley as Mrs. Dudley
- Lois Maxwell as Grace Markway
- Valentine Dyall as Mr. Dudley
- Diane Clare as Carrie Fredericks
- Ronald Adam as Eldridge Harper
Conclusion: The Haunting (1963) Film Review
The film at times reminds me of Psycho as we can at times hear Eleanor (Julie Harris) thoughts. It also has a Carnival of Souls vibe going for it as well and these are both good things. It’s a thoroughly intriguing and at times spine chilling supernatural tale that really is one of the best haunted house horror films made. Director Robert Wise really does do a terrific job in ramping up that uncomfortable feeling through the use of both sound and camera angles.
I highly recommend this one, in fact I’m putting it in the must see category!
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Conclusion: The Haunting (1963) Blu-ray Review
Warner Bros generally put out flawless Blu-ray releases and The Haunting is no exception. Shot in black and white there doesn’t appear to be a single mark or flicker anywhere to be found. Meanwhile the image is sharp and clear and the resolution upgrade over DVD makes this pretty much perfect.
On the extras front there’s just an audio commentary and a trailer.
Now to the downside and it’s a big one, currently The Haunting (1963) is not officially available in the UK, by that I mean Warner Bros have yet to release it. That said it is region free and you may be able to obtain a copy via third party sellers on the internet. Hopefully this is one title that may come out as part of HMV’s exclusive deal with Warner, fingers crossed as everyone should be able to see the classic horror film on glorious Blu-ray.
- Commentary by Juile Harris, Claire Bloom, Richard Johnson, Russ Tamblyn, Director Robert Wise & Screenwriter Nelson Gidding
- Theatrical Trailer
On to my movie rating for The Haunting (1963)
- Movie Rating: MUST SEE
- Blu-ray Picture: EXCELLENT
- Extras: OK
For those of you yet to see the film I’ll leave you with a little taster…
Clip not be representative of the Blu-ray version
So that’s The Haunting (1963) Blu-ray review, if you have any thoughts on this film you can leave them in the comment section below:
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Summary: The Haunting (1963) Blu-ray Review
Director(s): Robert Wise
Actor(s): Julie Harris, Claire Bloom, Richard Johnson, Russ Tamblyn, Fay Compton
- Movie Rating
- Blu-ray Picture Rating
A spine chilling supernatural tale with more in common with the likes of Carnival of Souls & Psycho
- Spine chilling ghost story
- Not Available On Blu-ray In The UK