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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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Sunday, February 9, 2014

Burn, Witch, Burn (1962)

Starring Peter Wyngarde, Janet Blair, Margaret Johnston, Anthony Nicholls, Colin Gordon
Directed by Sidney Hayers
(actor & director credits courtesy IMDB.com)

A college professor discovers his wife has been practicing witchcraft, and forces her to give it up, and burn all her protective charms, but then bad things start happening to him.

This supernatural thriller is terrifically suspenseful and entertaining, well-scripted by Richard Matheson and Charles Beaumont, from a novel by Fritz Leiber, which had been adapted before as Weird Woman, an entry in the 1940s "Inner Sanctum" film series.  Although time and time again, I've found the original always surpasses the remake, this film is an exception, with Blair giving a solid performance as the woman who turns to witchcraft to protect her husband, sharp black-and-white photography from Reginald Wyer, and a humdinger of a climax, cleverly staged by director Hayers.

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