Horror Castle (1963)

HORROR CASTLE (1963)
aka La vergine di Norimberga
Article 2990 by Dave Sindelar
Viewing Date: 7-15-2009
Posting Date: 10-21-2009
Directed by Antonio Margheriti
Featuring Rossana Podesta, Georges Riviere, Christopher Lee
Country: Italy

A woman is brought to the ancestral home of her new husband, only to discover that there is a horrible family secret. Is it possible that the ghost of a family ancestor who practiced horrible tortures is active?

There are some problems with this Italian horror movie; the musical score is often either overbearing or inappropriate, and much of the running time is dedicated to trotting out some tired Italian horror movie cliches. However, this one has some real pluses; the backstory is quite original, and there’s a wonderful make-up job on display in the last half-hour of the movie. However, what makes it memorable is that it really delivers some strong horror jolts; the opening sequence is memorable, as is the first view of the hooded figure’s face. The real kicker, though, is a sequence involving rats in the middle of the movie that will definitely stick with you; it’s perhaps the most shocking moment in Italian horror cinema of the period. Though it’s not as good as Margheriti’s CASTLE OF BLOOD, it’s still a worthy shocker in its own right.

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