Small House of Everything

Small House of Everything

Tuesday, May 17, 2011


There's nothing like a cheesy horror film to make my day.  Carnival of Souls is the 1962 brainchild of Herk Harvey, a producer/director/writer whose previous work was in industrial and educational films.  His otto seems to have been "We Don't Need No Stinkin' Hollywood!"  Shot in three weeks in Salt Lake City and his home base of Lawrence, Kansas, Harvey utilized local actors almost exclusively for Carnival of Souls, although he did tap Strasberg-trained Candace Hilligoss for the lead.  Never heard of Candace Hilligoss? 
Don't fret, not too many have.

     Hilligoss plays Mary Henry, who is the only survivor when a car goes over a bridge.  From that point on, she is haunted by the reflection of a ghoulish figure.  Slowly, her personality changes as she seemingl;y becomes possessed.

     Why bother explaining it, when you can view it.  So here's the cult classic, Carnival of Souls:

     For a complete rundown of this week's Overlooked Films, Television, A/V and Whatnot, check out Todd Mason's Sweet Freedom blog.


  1. NEVER cheesy, Jerry. It shows its nonexistent budget, but damn it stretches those twelve dollars artfully, and uses most of its inherent limitations to enhance its eeriness. I'm not sure one should look at a public-domain print, rather than the Criterion release.

    But I can't fault the choice.

  2. The turn in her fortunes at the rooming-house alone is enough to elevate this Way the Hell above most horror films of any kind.

  3. I LOVE this movie! And I'd agree with Todd that it really transcends its cheapie roots. I found it very effective from the first viewing on a poor videotape copy. Excellent stuff.