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Greetings, and welcome to VIEWING THE CLASSICS. Here you'll find capsule reviews of vintage movies from the early days of cinema through the 1970s, with a special emphasis on sci-fi, horror, and mystery movies. Be sure to check out the Pages links, where you can find a Film Index of all my reviews, links to the reviews organized by cast members, directors, and other contributors, and links to my reviews of the films of talented young director Joshua Kennedy.

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Thursday, June 20, 2013

The Shuttered Room (1967)

Starring Gig Young, Carol Lynley, Oliver Reed, Flora Robson, Judith Arthy
Directed by David Greene
(actor & director credits courtesy IMDB.com)

A young woman returns with her husband to her childhood home on the isle of Dunwich, but the island residents warn her it is a house of evil.

Based on a story by August Derleth and H.P. Lovecraft, this is a disturbing tale of horror, but the shocking secret of the house is at times less disturbing then the reckless youths of the island, who also threaten the young couple.  Although this affords a showy role for Oliver Reed as the gang's ringleader, it's too similar to parts he's played before, and I feel the filmmakers would have been better off focusing more on the mystery behind the creature in "the shuttered room."  The film's avant-garde music score, featuring a combination of jazz and discordant rhythms is as interesting risk, although I'm not sure it makes the picture any better.  Still, the cast puts in good work here, there's some striking photography, and the story is a classic, even if the film isn't.

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