All I seem to hear nowadays is people going on about remakes and how rubbish they are. What we don't seem to have anymore is the genuine rivalry between film makers, with them accusing each other of stealing their ideas. Hitchcock and William Castle were allegedly rivals. Now, whether it was just Press Hype or not I don't know, but to argue about ones own film style being stolen sounds like a whole lot of fun to me. Castle was of course responsible for the originals of House on Haunted Hill and 13 Ghosts. Here as the Hitchockian introduction to this film by Castle promises, we are about to witness someone go homicidal...
With a Psycho-like feel the very glamorous yet mysterious Emily checks in to a hotel. The bellboy she meets there she already knows. They plan to marry that night for reasons other than romance, which are yet to be revealed.
At the ceremony in the middle of a living room, Emily suddenly stabs their fat backstreet minister. With the stabbing sound effects less like the blade going through a watermelon of Psycho, but more of a football. But nicely dramatic and grotesque nonetheless. She flees, leaving the bellboy, shocked, to pick up the pieces. Returning home we see that Emily is the psychotic live-in nurse of Helga, the mute wheelchair bound childhood guardian of Warren and Miriam.
Privately, Emily switches from maniacal grinning to violent rages. Publicly, she still isn't really fooling anyone. Miriam and her boyfriend are on to her which puts them in more danger. Even her friend Warren is a little suspicious of her at first. And Warren is in line to inherit his hated late father's cash in two days time. Is Emily planning on getting her hands on his money? This photo shows the minutes before an extremely satisfying decapitation scene. Yes, I did say extremely satisfying.
This one definitely put a smile on my face even after guessing the big reveal early. The slickest film I've seen of its time. With a twist of an ending that will put more modern films to absolute shame. Regardless of the OTT dramatics, the acting here is second to none. And it just goes to show, a homicidal maniac can go from your best friend to your killer in a second.