Trailer from The Haunting, released in 1963, and considered one of the scariest movies ever made. It is directed by Robert Wise, stars Julie Harris, and is based on the chilling
literary classic The Haunting of Hill House
by Shirley Jackson.
Doors swung open on their own. Creaking hinges portended, to a child's imagination, attacks by flying ghosts and cackling witches. The house confounded with layers of peeling wallpaper, mismatched patterns crawling crazily up the walls. Shadowed corners sheltered mice with frightened bright eyes and patiently feeding spiders suspended on sticky webs. The hallways and many rooms that unfolded one after
the other, were crowded with
ornate shapes that
by day were innocuous curiosities collected by Aunt Lily, but by night became goblins, devils and creatures bent on torture.
Rebecca made noise to keep the dizzying confusion at bay. She was an intelligent girl and very sensitive. She keenly felt the sadness of her great aunts' loss, a sadness portrayed by the cluttered detritus of their early deaths and broken hearts. Rebecca raised her child's voice and shrieked nonsense about missing toys, or disappointing snacks, or socks that were too tight. She flung her body at the walls and flipped over furniture. Her parents were horrified, and then
resigned. They would get through this. They had so many times before.
"Poor child," crooned Dorothy, "Mommy's here. Hush baby."
They brought blankets and pillows to the downstairs living room, the one with a round wood-burning stove and wide, modern sofas. Nate closed all the doors and turned off lights from the tower stairs on down. They ate store-bought cookies and chips from boxes and watched nonsense on television with the volume up loud. By then Rebecca would be cuddled in her mother's arms, breathing with shaky little gasps, her cheeks wet with tears. Dorothy would smooth Rebecca's soft, golden hair
back gently, over and over while the house shifted about them, the ugly pressure from above making the ceiling beams groan.
"Quite a storm tonight, eh?" said Nate with forced calm. He poured them both a brandy. "Baby asleep yet?"
"Almost," said Dorothy. "Almost."
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