DirectorReginald Le Borg Music directorRichard LaSalle Duration LanguageEnglish
Release dateMarch 6, 1963 (1963-03-06) (U.S.)
July 12, 1963 (1963-07-12) (Finland)
August 26, 1963 (1963-08-26) (Sweden) Based onstories by Guy de Maupassant including The Horla WriterGuy de Maupassant (stories), Robert E. Kent CastVincent Price (Simon Cordier), Nancy Kovack (Odette Mallotte), Chris Warfield (Paul Duclasse), Elaine Devry (Jeanne D'Arville), Ian Wolfe (Pierre), Stephen Roberts (Captain Robert Rennedon) Similar moviesCameron's Closet, Mill of the Stone Women, A Bucket of Blood, House of Horrors, The Snow Woman, Push
TaglineThe most terrifying motion picture ever!
Diary of a madman 1963 vincent price full movie
When Judge Simon Cordier (Vincent Price) goes to see Louis Girot (Harvey Stephens), a prisoner he sentenced to death, the criminal insists he is not guilty and that he is inhabited by an evil spirit. Cordier dismisses Girots claims, but he becomes unnerved when Girot lights himself on fire to supposedly end the demonic possession. After the visit, Cordier, beset by insomnia, begins to have odd visions and starts to wonder if Girot might have been telling the truth after all.
Diary of a Madman is a 1963 horror film directed by Reginald Le Borg and starring Vincent Price, Nancy Kovack, and Chris Warfield.
The screenplay, written by producer Robert Kent, is an adaptation of Guy de Maupassants short story "Le Horla" ("The Horla"), written in 1887. Kents rendition is notably divergent from the source material, especially in relation to the religious and moral themes of the film, which contradict not only those of the short story, but de Maupassants as well.
Simon Cordier, a French magistrate and amateur sculptor comes into contact with a malevolent entity. The invisible - yet corporeal - being, called a "horla" is capable of limited psychokinesis and complete mind control.
Diary of a madman 1963 trailer
Following the funeral of Simon Cordier (Vincent Price), a French magistrate and amateur sculptor, his secret diary is read out by Simons pastor friend to a group of people gathered around the table, Simons servants, and a police captain. The diary transpires that Simon has come into contact with a malevolent entity. The invisible yet corporeal being, called a horla is capable of limited psychokinesis and complete mind control.
Cordier first interacts with the horla when he meets a prisoner whom the horla drove to commit murder. The horla possesses the inmate and attempts to kill Cordier, who in self-defense accidentally kills the man. The magistrate inherits the prisoners troubles as the horla turns its hauntings toward him.
As the horla begins to destroy Cordiers life, Cordier fears he is going mad and seeks help from a psychologist, who suggests he take a hobby. Cordier chooses to pick up his old interest in art, meeting a model along the way. The horla insists the model is not the charming jewel that Cordier sees, but instead a conniving gold digger, and compels Cordier to treat her as such. This sets up a conflict in Cordier, that he might not be the astute judge of character that his title indicates.
As his and others lives are put in jeopardy, he becomes convinced of the horlas existence and decides drastic measures are needed to end the horlas evil. He lures the horla into his house at night. When his presence is felt, Simon hurls an oil lamp towards the curtains, setting the house ablaze.
Simon succeeds in destroying the horla, but not without sacrificing himself as the house burns in flames. The film concludes with the people seated round the table agreeing that so long as the horla, which they believe to be a figment of Simons imagination, exists in the hearts of Man, evil will prevail.
Vincent Price as Simon Cordier
Nancy Kovack as Odette Mallotte DuClasse
Chris Warfield as Paul DuClasse
Elaine Devry as Jeanne DArville
Ian Wolfe as Pierre, Cordiers Butler
Stephen Roberts as Captain Robert Rennedon
Lewis Martin as Fr. Raymonde
Mary Adams as Louise, Cordiers Cook
Joseph Ruskin as The Horla (voice)
Vincent Price appears in Diary of a Madman and Twice-Told Tales. Vincent Price appears in Diary of a Madman and Tales of Terror. Vincent Price appears in Diary of a Madman and The Pit and the Pendulum. Vincent Price appears in Diary of a Madman and House on Haunted Hill. Vincent Price appears in Diary of a Madman and The Tomb of Ligeia.
Production and reception
The movie was originally entitled The Horla. Filming started 18 July 1962.
Director Reginald Le Borg said he wanted the voice of Horla to come out distorted but producer Edward Small wanted it to sound clear, which the director thought was a mistake.