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The Pit and the Pendulum (1961)

Cast: Vincent Price, Vincent Price, John Kerr, more...
Director: Roger Corman, Roger Corman
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Rating: Not Rated
Studio: MGM
Genre: Horror, Costume Drama/Period Piece
Running Time: 80 min.
Languages: English, French
Subtitles: Spanish, French
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This title is currently out of print.

Recently Rented By Cinenaut


Synopsis
American-International's standing "haunted castle" set is exhibited to peak advantage in Roger Corman's Pit & the Pendulum. Save for the climax, Richard Matheson's script bears but little resemblance to the Edgar Allen Poe original, though there are pronounced echoes throughout of Poe's The Premature Burial. Vincent Price stars as Nicholas Medina, the son of a notorious Spanish Inquisition torturer. Nicholas' wife Elizabeth (Barbara Steele) has died under mysterious circumstances, prompting Elizabeth's brother Francis (John Kerr) to arrive at the Medina castle to investigate. The tormented Medina believes that Elizabeth was buried alive, and is convinced that he can hear his wife's voice calling out to him. In truth, Elizabeth has faked her death, part of a plan concocted with her lover Dr. Leon (Anthony Carbone) to drive Medina mad. She succeeds in this goal (albeit to her own grief, as the film's very last shot reveals), pushing Medina over the brink. Convinced that he's his own father, Medina dons Inquisition robes, straps Francis to a table, and arranges for a huge steel-bladed pendulum to slowly, slooooowwly descend on his helpless victim. You'd never know that Pit & The Pendulum was shot on the budget and schedule of a B western; the film is consistently good to look at, with eerily evocative color camerawork (Floyd Crosby) and sumptuous art direction. Stock footage of the climactic torture sequence would later find its way into the 1966 spy spoof Dr. Goldfoot and the Bikini Machine, which also starred Vincent Price. ~ Hal Erickson, All Movie Guide



GreenCine Member Rating
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(Average 7.37)
54 Votes
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Monster Kids Matinees
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The films kids in the 50's and early 60's saw on the big screen in saturday kiddie shows
JVNem
Richard Matheson: Storyteller
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Movies written by and/or based on works by Richard Matheson, one of my favorite writers of science fiction and horror
ColonelKong

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