01 November 2014

Dementia 13 (1963)
75 min.
Directed by Francis Ford Coppola.
With William Campbell, Luana Anders, Bart Patton, Mary Mitchell, Patrick Magee, Ethne Dunn.
Interesting low-budget film directed by the great Coppola for producer Roger Corman.

After her wealthy husband John Haloran dies of a heart attack, young Louise (Anders) is worried she won't get any of his family's massive money due to the current stipulations in his will.

So she dumps his body in a lake and decides to pretend he's still alive.

She pays a visit to John's ancestral family home, the Castle Haloran, deciding to ingratiate herself with her mother-in-law and John's two brothers. But before she can lay her hands on a penny of the Haloran ritches, she's offed by an anonymous killer with an axe!

Soon, the axe murderer is picking off the Haloran clan one by one. What could be his motivation?

There are certainly shades of PSYCHO here, such as the fact that the protoganist is dishonest and somewhat unsympathetic, as well as the fact that she's murdered early on.

Worth seeing. And if you liked the scene in John Carpenter's Halloween, in which a character finds her friend's corpse with a tombstone behind her, guess what...it was done here first - and underwater!

Coppola filmed this with funds left over from Corman's own Young Racers released the same year. Additional sequences were shot post production by director Jack Hill (who directed Spider Baby in 1968).

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