5.4/10
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16 user 3 critic

Stark Fear (1962)

A sadistic husband mentally tortures his wife, while eventually planning to murder her. Although no one believes her, she gets help from an unexpected source.

Directors:

Ned Hockman, Skip Homeier (uncredited)

Writer:

Dwight V. Swain (original screenplay)
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Cast

Cast overview:
Beverly Garland ... Ellen Winslow
Skip Homeier ... Gerald Winslow
Kenneth Tobey ... Cliff Kane
Hannah Stone Hannah Stone ... Ruth
George Clow George Clow
Paul Scovil Paul Scovil
Edna Newman Edna Newman
John Arville John Arville
Bruce Palmer Bruce Palmer
Carey Mount Carey Mount
Cortez Ewing Cortez Ewing
Robert Stone Robert Stone ... (as Bob Stone)
Barbara Freeman Barbara Freeman
Darlene Dana Reno Darlene Dana Reno
Joseph Benton Joseph Benton
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Storyline

"Stark Fear" is the story of Ellen Winslow, who hungers for affection but finds herself chained to a hate-warped husband Gerald. Ellen gets a job, which is more than George seems to be able to do, but he disappears in a jealous rage, but Ellen's sense of loyalty and duty won't let her abandon him, so she goes looking for him in his home town. Gerald attacks her anew, and she is subjected to painful humiliation and abuse by Gerald's best friend, lecherous old Harvey Suggett, at a Comanche tribal dance. The hidden Gerald watches with sadistic delight. Ellen buries herself in her work, to forget her anguish, and falls in love with her employer, Cliff Kane, and they both take a business weekend at the "Little Switzerland" resort in Arkansas. Ellen tells Gerald that he is too emotionally warped for marriage and divorces him, and to prove she is wrong he tries to kill her. Written by Les Adams <longhorn1939@suddenlink.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

A NEW kind of suspense as you follow the PSYCHO into a new dimension of HORROR! See more »

Genres:

Drama | Thriller

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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

December 1962 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

B.H.S. Productions See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Beverly Garland says this is her least favorite of all the movies she's made. She also said that first-time director Ned Hockman walked off the set after disagreements with the cast and producers, and that co-star Skip Homeier finished directing the picture. See more »

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User Reviews

 
Another low-budget "shocker" influenced by PSYCHO
16 September 2015 | by melvelvit-1See all my reviews

Ned Hockman's STARK FEAR is yet another obscure low budget "psycho- thriller" heavily influenced by PSYCHO and not just because B-movie babe Beverly Garland resembles Marion Crane while looking at herself in the rear view mirror on her way to a sleazy motel. Husband Skip Homeier (who took over directing when Hockman quit) is a sadistic "pervert" (read homosexual) with a mother fixation and Bev's a plucky masochist who blames herself for everything that happens. When Skip goes missing, she looks for him (God only knows why) in an Oklahoma hometown just this side of DELIVERANCE where she's raped in a cemetery by his childhood friend. Unbeknownst to his ravaged wife, her husband's secretly watching in the shadows of his mother's grave and keeps her bloody bra as a souvenir. He's later holed up in a motel room with her rapist and no explanation's given (connect the dots) as Garland goes home and throws herself into her work where her boss (genre fave Kenneth Tobey) falls in love with her ...but he's got a secret, too, of course. There's no end to this woman's woes.

The IMDb Trivia on the film says it was Beverly Garland's least favorite of all her movies but I don't know why since she gives it all she's got and turns in a sincere performance in a film that's equal parts sleaze and hokum. Bev's best friend actually tells her to stay with her abusive husband rather than end up a spinster like herself and after Garland is raped, she, of course, blames herself and not her attacker. And although she loves him, she won't go all the way with her boss because she's (gasp) still married. Geez Louise. A truly bizarre "shocker" that looks like it's trying to say something, I just don't know what.


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