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House of Dark Shadows (1970)

Vampire Barnabas Collins is accidentally released from his centuries-long confinement at his family's estate in Maine. He targets his clueless descendants who live there now and pursues Maggie, the incarnation of his lost love.

Director:

Dan Curtis

Writers:

Sam Hall (screenplay), Gordon Russell (screenplay)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Jonathan Frid ... Barnabas Collins
Grayson Hall ... Dr. Julia Hoffman
Kathryn Leigh Scott ... Maggie Evans
Roger Davis ... Jeff Clark
Nancy Barrett ... Carolyn Stoddard
John Karlen ... Willie Loomis
Thayer David ... Professor T. Eliot Stokes
Louis Edmonds ... Roger Collins
Don Briscoe Don Briscoe ... Todd Blake (as Donald Briscoe)
David Henesy ... David Collins
Dennis Patrick ... Sheriff George Patterson
Lisa Blake Richards ... Daphne Budd (as Lisa Richards)
Jerry Lacy ... Minister
Barbara Cason ... Mrs. Johnson
Paul Michael Paul Michael ... Old Man
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Storyline

House Of Dark Shadows, based on the very popular TV Gothic soap opera, follows the life (or is that AFTERlife) of Barnabas Collins. Recently unleashed from his coffin by local drunk, Willie Loomis, the vampire (Barnabas) goes on a killing spree, while at the same time charming his present day family members. In the process he meets local girl Maggie Evans and notices that she looks exactly like his deceased fiance Josette. Barnabas assumes that she is the reincarnation of Josette, and plans to make her his unholy bride for eternity. Written by Nate Gardner <kzegersfan@sugar-river.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Barnabas Collins, vampire, takes a bride in a bizarre act of ultimate lust. See more »


Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

6 March 1971 (Japan) See more »

Also Known As:

Dark Shadows See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$750,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Metrocolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The Collinwood scenes were filmed at the Lyndhurst Estate in Tarrytown, New York. See more »

Goofs

[All goofs for this title are spoilers.] See more »

Quotes

Barnabas Collins: You went to her, and tried to warn her about me! You betrayed me, Willie!
See more »

Crazy Credits

SPOILER: There is a scene during the closing credits: Barnabas turns into a bat and flies away. See more »

Alternate Versions

The preview version of the film included a scene where young David Collins pretends to hang himself. No copies of this footage are known to exist. See more »

Connections

Followed by Night of Dark Shadows (1971) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Vampy AND Campy!
20 July 2007 | by phillindholmSee all my reviews

"House of Dark Shadows", the first feature based on the fondly remembered Gothic soap opera is both exciting and schlocky - sometimes concurrently. Director Dan Curtis (on a very low budget) took what on television was an extremely lengthy introduction and history of the Barnabas Collins character and crammed all he could of it into a 96 minute film. Most of the television cast are here to recreate their parts, chief among them Jonathan Frid as everyone's favorite Vampire. When surly caretaker Willie Loomis (John Karlen) foolishly frees him from his coffin where he has been sleeping for almost 200 years, Barnabas heads for the Collins family mansion and introduces himself as a cousin from England. Both the matriarch of the family, Elizabeth Stoddard (Joan Bennett) and her brother Roger Collins (Louis Edmonds) welcome him and immediately install him in the "old house" which, in fact, is Barnabas' original home. Though the plot has a few twists not seen in the series, the story is still pretty familiar.Sure enough, Barnabas soon has his way with Elizabeth's daughter Carolyn (Nancy Barrett)and she becomes one of his first victims. Although such familiar characters as Professor Stokes (Thayer David) Jeff Clark (Roger Davis) young David Collins (David Henesy) and Todd Jennings (Donald Briscoe) appear, their functions are relatively brief. The two chief supporting females upon whom the plot really turns are Maggie Evans (Kathryn Leigh Scott) the beautiful governess who bears a striking resemblance to Josette Du Pres, Barnabas' first love, and Dr. Julia Hoffman (Grayson Hall) an old family friend writing a history of the Collins family. For seemingly different reasons, both are attracted to Barnabas, and both get more than they bargained for when they become involved with him. The film is fast-paced, predictably gory, and occasionally unintentionally humorous, with loopholes big enough to drive a hearse through. Fans of the show will have a definite edge over new viewers because little is done to introduce the uninitiated to the characters (most of whom quickly go under the tooth anyway) and background of the story.It's also a shame that the still-beautiful Bennett has little to do. Still, it's sincerely acted by all, boasts a superior score by Robert Cobert (much of it recycled from the series),and some beautiful photography. "House of Dark Shadows" is one place you'll want to explore.


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