Would you like to see one of those heads? Nora Manning
House on Haunted Hill (1959) starts with screams and demented laughter, then disembodied heads floating through the air, introducing the movie and the characters, which reminded me of an Agatha Christie book. I loved it from the first sequence, how is it possible not to?
This movie has the weird feeling that it’s the red-headed stepchild adaptation of The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson, which made this movie even more exciting for me. They put a different twist on it, so unless you’ve read it, you won’t know the differences and the similarities. Annabelle Loren hosts a dinner party, but since her husband invited the guests, she doesn’t want to join them. She thinks her husband wants to kill her, the same thought is circling her husband.
The effects are the bomb, the old woman moving across the floor is my favorite. And this movie has some of the best screams, and my favorite actress is Carolyn Craig in her portrayal of Nora Manning. I love the way she shrieks her lines, it conveys the hysteria she’s pretending to have to over the top levels.
I give House on Haunted Hill 4.5 out of 5 Stars.