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Pit and the Pendulum (1961)

Not Rated | | Drama, Horror, Mystery | 23 August 1961 (USA)
In the sixteenth century, Francis Barnard travels to Spain to clarify the strange circumstances of his sister's death after she had married the son of a cruel Spanish Inquisitor.

Director:

Roger Corman

Writers:

Richard Matheson (screenplay), Edgar Allan Poe (story "The Pit and the Pendulum")

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Vincent Price ... Nicholas Medina / Sebastian Medina
John Kerr ... Francis Barnard
Barbara Steele ... Elizabeth Barnard Medina
Luana Anders ... Catherine Medina
Antony Carbone ... Doctor Charles Leon
Patrick Westwood ... Maximillian
Lynette Bernay Lynette Bernay ... Maria (as Lynne Bernay)
Larry Turner Larry Turner ... Nicholas as a Child
Mary Menzies Mary Menzies ... Isabella
Charles Victor Charles Victor ... Bartolome
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Storyline

Francis Barnard goes to Spain, when he hears his sister Elizabeth has died. Her husband Nicholas Medina, the son of the brutest torturer of the Spanish Inquisition, tells him she has died of a blood disease, but Francis finds this hard to believe. After some investigating he finds out that it was extreme fear that was fatal to his sister and that she may have been buried alive! Strange things then start to happen in the Medina castle. Written by Leon Wolters <wolters@strw.LeidenUniv.nl>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The Greatest Terror Tale Ever Told! See more »

Genres:

Drama | Horror | Mystery

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

MGM Studios [United States]

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

23 August 1961 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Edgar Allan Poe's Pit and the Pendulum See more »

Filming Locations:

Palos Verdes, California, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$200,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Alta Vista Productions See more »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Ryder Sound Services)

Color:

Color (Pathécolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This was the second of Roger Corman's "Poe" films. He had intended to do "The Masque of the Red Death" but felt that it was too close to the content of Ingmar Bergman's recent The Seventh Seal (1957) (US title: "The Seventh Seal"). Several years later Corman would go to England to make The Masque of the Red Death (1964). See more »

Goofs

The name plate on Elizabeth Medinas tomb goes from looking almost brand new to worn and rusty and back in several different shots. See more »

Quotes

[last lines]
Catherine: No one shall ever enter this room again.
See more »

Alternate Versions

2 shots of a corpse's face in a coffin were cut by the BBFC from the original UK cinema version. All later versions were uncut. See more »

Connections

Featured in The Sci-Fi Boys (2006) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
Vincent Price is wonderful!!
30 December 1999 | by oguer22656See all my reviews

I just recently "discovered" the "Pit and the Pendulum" after a friend recommended it. I watched the video on a dark and windy night and I was absolutely chilled! It was wonderfully atmospheric, beautifully filmed, and the suspense kept mounting right up until the climatic end. >

Vincent Price was terrific, bringing such sympathy to this role. I think any other actor would have easily been over the top, but Price keeps it in check. John Kerr was properly aggressive as the over wrought brother and the other actors were just as impressive.

This type of movie making just confirms to me that you don't need a shameless amount of blood and guts to be terrified. I know I'm going to have a grand old time checking out Price's other movies!


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