6.7/10
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Don't Be Afraid of the Dark (1973)

Unrated | | Horror | TV Movie 10 October 1973
A young couple inherits an old mansion inhabited by small demon-like creatures who are determined to make the wife one of their own.

Director:

John Newland

Writer:

Nigel McKeand
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Kim Darby ... Sally Farnham
Jim Hutton ... Alex Farnham
Barbara Anderson ... Joan Kahn
William Demarest ... Mr. Harris
Pedro Armendáriz Jr. ... Francisco Perez (as Pedro Armendariz Jr.)
Lesley Woods ... Ethyl
Robert Cleaves Robert Cleaves ... Doctor
Sterling Swanson Sterling Swanson ... Policeman
Joel Lawrence Joel Lawrence ... George Kahn (as J.H. Lawrence)
William Sylvester ... Tom Henderson
Don Mallon Don Mallon ... Bob
Celia Milius ... Anne (as Celia Kaye)
Elizabeth St. Clair Elizabeth St. Clair ... Party Guest
Monika Henreid Monika Henreid ... Party Guest (as Monica Henreid)
Robert Priest Robert Priest ... Party Guest
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Storyline

A neurotic housewife named Sally and her business exec husband move into Sally's family house, a spooky two story Victorian mansion. When Sally starts the redecorating along with her pompous decorator she comes across a locked room in the house. After arguing with the handyman who insists she should leave the room locked, she finally gets the key. But once she opens her father's old study and has the bricks from the fireplace removed, strange things begin to happen. Sally begins to see small creatures everywhere, but no one will believe her. Her husband dismisses her as neurotic and her friend thinks Sally may be losing her mind. But things take a deadly serious turn when the decorator trips at the top of the stairs and falls to his death. Sally sees a rope lying across the place where he tripped, but when she picks it up to take it, a horrifying little creature pulls it from her grasp. Is she crazy? Or has Sally released demons in the house, demons her father summoned? Written by Philip Berry <tr808@home.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Can you see them, Sally ... hiding in the shadows. They're alive, Sally. They want you to be one of them when the lights go out. See more »

Genres:

Horror

Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

10 October 1973 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Don't Be Afraid of the Dark See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Lorimar Productions See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Movielab)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The total time of filming, including script approval by Lorimar, casting, special effects, voice-over and exterior shots were all completed in slightly over two weeks, one of the quickest made-for-television movies ever made; this was due mainly to a writers strike that had begun just before the script was completed. See more »

Goofs

(at around 1h 5 mins) When the creatures cut the electric cable and plunge the house into darkness, when Joan is outside trying to get back into the house after looking at the fuse box, it's daylight out - or at least twilight. However, just a few moments earlier, when she was in the bedroom with Sally and looked out the window, it was very dark outside, clearly night time. At the same time that this action is happening, Alex is driving back to the house with Mr. Harris, and it's clearly night. But as Joan is circling the house to get in, you can see sunlight casting shadows on the house and on the ground behind her. See more »

Quotes

Sally Farnham: [on a shopping spree] Maybe Alex is right. Maybe I am losing my mind.
Joan Kahn: You know how a husband can tell you've lost your mind?
[laughs and takes her arm]
Joan Kahn: When you stop spending their money! So let's go spend some more of our husbands' money right away.
See more »

Connections

Featured in WatchMojo: Another Top 10 Scariest Movie Monsters (2017) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Simple and Effective Horror Film
20 February 2012 | by claudio_carvalhoSee all my reviews

Sally Farnham (Kim Darby) and her husband Alex Farnham (Jim Hutton) move to an old mansion that belonged to Sally's grandmother and they hire an interior designer and the carpenter Mr. Harris (William Demarest) to redecorate the manor.

Sally opens a locked door in the house and finds a sealed fireplace and ash pit. She asks Mr. Harris to open the fireplace but the old man argues with her and refuses to follow the order. Sally uses Mr. Harris' wrench to remove the bolts of the ash pit cover. Sooner Sally finds that evil little creatures that fear the light have escaped from the underground through the ash pit and are threatening her. However, Alex and her friend Joan Kahn (Barbara Anderson) believe that Sally's imagination is affected by the words of Mr. Harris.

"Don't Be Afraid of the Dark" is a simple and effective horror film made for television released in Brazil only on VHS. The story of a young couple that moves to an old house and the wife Kim Darby, the unforgettable Miri of "Star Trek" and the girl Mattie Ross of "True Grit", releases demon-like creatures is original and developed in an adequate pace.

In 2010, Guillermo del Toro remade this film with a lame screenplay that included silly sub-plots and spoiled the original story. My vote is seven.

Title (Brazil): "Criaturas da Noite" ("Creatures of the Night")


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