Classic Horror Masterpiece: The Haunting (1963)

Halloween is finally here! It’s the day when it’s so okay for girls to dress slutty, guys get free passes to stare at them and not be slapped, and it’s that time of year when it’s okay to terrorize little kids with classic horror flicks. Movies like Paranormal Activity, Saw, and other popular Halloween related movies aren’t really that scary in my opinion. If it’s not about all the blood and gore, which is just disgusting, then it’s about a bunch of demons, ghouls, possession, and big budget scare tactics.

The scary movies that come out nowadays have the potential to be very scary, but at a certain point it loses that original vibe that makes a classic horror film. When I was attending the Colorado Film School, I had the opportunity to learn why the best horror films ever created came from the 50s, 60s, and of course the 80s. I was exposed to a lot of different film titles, but the film that stood out the most was a chilling movie called The Haunting.

The Haunting, the original 1963 film (remake was horrible,) is a classic horror masterpiece that will scare the crap out of you. It’s not filled with a lot of blood slashing and upfront confrontations with a supernatural being, but it’s driven by a subtle element of horror and detail that is psychologically teasing. It’s one of those rare horror films that focuses is what can’t be seen. In the film you never see a murder or the supernatural force tormenting the family, but the details in the narration and the visual effects, including amazing sound, create such a chilling sense of fear.

Robert Wise‘s The Haunting is truly a one of a kind horror masterpiece that was revolutionary during that time period. While some studios wanted to opt for bigger thrills, introducing more blood, deaths, and monsters, Wise decided to embark on creating the perfect psychological horror film. Even if you don’t get all terrified, you will still feel jumpy and mental be over analyzing each detail and sound. There are some moments in the film that catch you off guard and have you pondering what on earth could possibly happen next? Was it a murder? Did a supernatural force shake the door? Is a priest going to save the day? Should they run? Etc,etc,etc. You just can’t help but to begin rattling off questions.

I honestly can say that The Haunting is perhaps one of the scariest psychological horror films I have seen. It doesn’t have all the visual thrills and gore, but it’s such a powerful suspense film that is propelled forward with excellent characters, mind blowing set design, and eerie sounds that will give you the spooks! It’s a film that I’d highly recommend watching, and today you’re in luck! Turner Classic Movies has an all day classic horror movie marathon called “The Monster Mash!” It’s a great selection of some classic horror masterpieces from the 50s and 60s. Dracula Has risen From Grave is about to go off now, but then lineup is: The Curse of Frankenstein, Frankenstein Created Woman, The Mummy, The Curse of the Mummy’s Tomb, Village of the Damned, Night of the Living Dead, a segment called “A Night at the Movies,”  then The Innocents, and finally at 2am EST The Haunting.

The Haunting is worth staying up till 2am to watch, but since I barely sleep anyways I’ll be up eating popcorn and trying not scream. It’s best to cut off all the lights, get comfy, and settle in for a petrifying psychological horror film that focuses on what can’t be seen. As the movie tagline says, “You may not believe in ghosts, but you cannot deny terror!”

The Original Trailer for The Haunting (1963)

Great Fan-made trailer

The First 7 Minutes of the Film!

©Jasmine McGee.ThinkSoul25.