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Castle of Blood

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Music director  Riz Ortolani
7/10 IMDb

Genre  Horror
Running time  1h 30m
Country  Italy France
Castle of Blood movie poster
Director  Antonio Margheriti Sergio Corbucci
Release date  February 27, 1964 (1964-02-27) (Italy) April 14, 1965 (1965-04-14) (France)
Writer  Sergio Corbucci (screenplay), Giovanni Grimaldi (screenplay)
Directors  Antonio Margheriti, Sergio Corbucci
Screenplay  Sergio Corbucci, Giovanni Grimaldi
Cast  Barbara Steele (Elisabeth Blackwood), Georges Rivière (Alan Foster), Margarete Robsahm (Julia), Arturo Dominici (Dr. Carmus), Silvano Tranquilli (Edgar Allan Poe), Sylvia Sorrente (Elsi)
Similar movies  Dracula: Prince of Darkness, From Dusk Till Dawn, Blade: Trinity, The Woman in Black, The Beyond, Underworld: Rise of the Lycans
Tagline  The living and the dead change places in an orgy of terror!

Castle of blood 1964 trailer

Castle of Blood (Italian: Danza Macabra) is a 1964 horror film directed by Antonio Margheriti and Sergio Corbucci. The film stars Barbara Steele, Arturo Dominici and Georges Rivière. The film was initially commissioned to director Sergio Corbucci who had Gianni Grimaldi and Bruno Corbucci set to write the film. A scheduling conflict led to Corbucci's friend Margheriti being hired to complete the film. To avoid going overtime, Corbucci was brought in to film one scene.


Castle of Blood movie scenes

The film was released in Italy in 1964 and received low box office numbers which led to Margheriti remaking the film in colour as Web of the Spider (1970).

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Castle of Blood The Bloody Pit The Bloody Pit 26 CASTLE OF BLOOD and WEB OF THE

A journalist challenges the authenticity of Edgar Allan Poe's stories (which are presented in the context of the film as Poe's eyewitness accounts of the supernatural, not as literary fiction). To prove himself, the journalist accepts a bet from Lord Blackwood to spend the night in a haunted castle on All Soul's Eve. Ghosts of the murdered inhabitants appear to him throughout the night, re-enacting the events that lead to their deaths. One of the ghosts reveals that they all need his blood in order to maintain their existence. Barbara Steele plays a ghost who attempts to help the journalist escape.


Castle of Blood Castle of Blood 1964
  • Barbara Steele as Elisabeth Blackwood
  • Georges Rivière as Alan Foster
  • Margarete Robsahm as Julia
  • Arturo Dominici as Dr. Carmus
  • Silvano Tranquilli as Edgar Allan Poe
  • Sylvia Sorrente as Elsi
  • Giovanni Cianfriglia as Herbert
  • Umberto Raho as Lord Thomas Blackwood
  • Salvo Randone as Lester
  • Benito Stefanelli as William
  • Production

    Castle of Blood Psychobabble Review Danse Macabre aka Castle of Blood

    The idea for Castle of Blood came to Sergio Corbucci when producer Giovanni Addessi commissioned him to create a film that would reuse the Medieval sets from Corbucci's comedy film The Monk of Monza. Corbucci had his brother Bruno Corbucci and screenwriter Gianni Grimaldi to write the script. The script is credited to a short story by Edgar Allan Poe in the film's credits, but the film is not based on any specific Poe work. According to Ruggero Deodato, who was the assistant director on set, he persuaded actress Barbara Steele to star in the film. Deodato continued that Steele had just done for director Federico Fellini, and wanted to distance herself from horror films. When filming was about to begin, Sergio Corbucci found his schedule conflicting and called upon his friend Antonio Margheriti to direct the film.

    Castle of Blood The Midnight Room Happy Birthday Edgar Allan Poe Castle of Blood

    Margheriti had a tight schedule for filming, and shot the film using the same method as a television production by setting up four cameras at once. To finish the film on time, Margheriti brought in Sergio Corbucci to direct the scene where Giovanni Cingriglia's characters murders Steele's character. The film was eventually shot in 15 days.


    Castle of Blood Castle of Blood aka Danse Macabre HorrorTalk

    Castle of Blood was distributed in Italy by Globe International Film and released on February 27, 1964. The film grossed a total of 100.68 million Italian lire in Italy. It was released in France on April 14, 1965 under the title "Danse Macabre" (Dance of Death). The French cut of the film features actress Sylvia Sorrente in a nude scene.

    The film's disappointing box office was one of the reasons that Margheriti remade the film as Web of the Spider in colour in 1970. Margheriti would later comment that it was "stupid to remake it" and that "the color cinematography destroyed everything: the atmosphere, the tension."

    Critical reception

    From contemporary reviews, The Globe and Mail praised the film, noting an "ingenious script" and the acting by Georges Rivière, stating that the film was an "example of how an imaginative director can use camera, music, and a deliberately slow pace to fray the nerve ends." The review critiqued the ghost special effects as "unconvincing", and found Barbara Steele's performance to be melodramatic. The Monthly Film Bulletin praised the cinematography of the film but referred to Ortolani's score as "cliche-ridden", and wrote negatively about Steele's acting and the dubbed dialogue.

    Margheriti would later call the film "even more boring" many years after its initial release. AllMovie's review of the film was favorable, calling it an "eerie and effective early horror film."


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