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January 2nd, 2011, 11:57 PM
Anyone who knows me well knows quite well that horror movies, per se, are most certainly NOT my type of flicks, by any means......EXCEPT for the 1960 classic, "HORROR HOTEL".

Here is a movie that, at once, sets the stage for intrigue-laced horror......a story which, as it unfolds, only draws the viewer deeper.....and yet deeper still......into the fog-enshrouded streets of the fictitious Whitewood, Massachusets.....a godforsaken hamlet which time has forgotten in its onward rush to unimagined futures......a town which very much seems a ghostly remnant of a still-remembered nightmare.

The basis of the story itself is one whose roots reach far back in time to the earliest days of mankind......the eternal battle of good vs evil.

The characterizations in "HORROR HOTEL" are not only hauntingly convincing, but, also, remind us that not one should not judge a book by its cover.

The inkeeper of the "Raven's Inn", "Mrs. Newless", is at once reserved, aloof, and sinister, and yet, formally polite and most disarming. Her very presence is quite riveting.......and menacing.

Though "Jethro Keane's" part in the film is quite small, he still manages to convey a most lethal combination of an "old school", reserved gentleman and a glowering minion of evil.

He exhibits an almost courtly, old-fashioned gentility, which only superficially masks his true dark nature.

Christopher Lee's "Prof. Alan Driscoll" is, perhaps, the most powerful presence in the film.

His casual, almost fatherly suggestions to his aspiring student, "Nan Barlow", become even more of a paradox when you finally come to realize that he is setting his student up to be the next human sacrifice for the Coven at Whitewood.

At once commanding, sinister, and intellectual, "Prof. Driscoll" is indeed a man who is leading two lives.......and only those of his kind know of his TRUE self.

The classic automobiles seen in the the film......the fast jazz heard through the door of "Nan's" room at the Inn, as the other "guests" dance the evening away until the fateful "Hour Of Thirteen"......the old-fashioned telephones.....the electric lights.....all seem to be subtle links of a sort....links connecting the "normal" world light-years removed from Whitewood, and the brooding, evil, fog-enshrouded atmosphere forever gripping the cursed hamlet itself.

Unlike the horror movies of later years, (IMHO, overly gory and bloody), "HORROR HOTEL" more than succeeds at instilling a growing sense of dread, terror,......and then unbridled horror, as the film progresses.

Who amongst us would not be terrified senseless if they heard the eerie sounds of voices singing in praise of Lucifer, beneath the floorboards of thier room in an eerie, 17th century inn?

When "Nan".....and later on, her brother "Richard".....walk along the street of Whitewood, the faces of the the unspeaking passers-by........exude nothing short of pure evil......far more profound than any spoken words could have conveyed.

This, then, IS the DEVIL'S town, to be sure!

"Nan" is clearly a young, ambitious woman.....TOO ambitious, as we clearly see through the first part of the film.

That such a sweet-mannered girl, far too trusting and naive for her own good, met such a horrific end, stays with the viewer long after the film concludes.

"Jethro", clearly, was the Chief of "Lucifer's Welcoming Commitee", making sure he greeted each fresh victim at the crossroads.....accepting a ride into Whitewood in thier autos......a reserved, yet disarmingly congenial fellow who is clearly on a mission......one that does NOT include valet parking!

"HORROR HOTEL", unmistakingly is far more than just a vintage horror film.

It is, quite frankly, a carefully-woven tale of deception, intrigue, skeptisism, and horror.......showcasing perhaps the ULIMATE battle of Good Vs. Evil!

Now.....if you'll excuse me......I must go now.......I'm needing a lift into Whitewood......


January 3rd, 2011, 12:31 AM

Just became aware that this part of the Forum was for "BOOKS & LITERATURE"......I clearly made a mistake, thinking that this area was for horror/fantasy FILMS!!:eek:

Sorry......being the "new kid on the block" ain't easy, sometimes.....:rolleyes:


January 3rd, 2011, 05:53 AM
No problem: it happens!

Thread moved to the film area of SFFWorld.


January 3rd, 2011, 09:12 AM

Thank you, and it's always good to have assistance from one of the "pros"!!;)

And I'm the one who is SUPPOSED to GIVE directions to unsuspecting motorists who are headed for Whitewood??:eek:

Well, they have those GPS gizmos nowadays, anyway.......:rolleyes:


January 25th, 2011, 02:15 AM
......for a horror movie where not one drop of blood is seen by the viewer's eyes, this classic film STILL had the overwheming power to THOROUGHLY scare the dickens out of you!!!:eek::eek::eek:

"HORROR HOTEL" is, without a doubt, one of those classics, that, much like a good book, keeps you coming back for more.....time after time.....