They'll scare your pants off...and give you the chill of your life!
1967 | Color | 87 Min | 1.85:1 | PG | Mono | Comedy/Horror/Musical | Woolner Brothers Pictures
Director: Jean Yarbrough
Writers: Duke Yelton
Lon Chaney Jr
Oh boy, where do I start with this one? Let's start with the title and the cast. Sounds pretty solid to be you get some big hitters the word Hillbilly and Haunted House. Pretty promising too so let sit back and relax to some country jams good looking gam's and Lon Chaney.
I really should have turned this off when the opening scene was three people singing about getting to Nashville for a jamboree. I'm not a country western music fan, but ok let's stick with it. So the manager in the back seat is stressed out over a storm coming so the trio out in the middle of now where to seek shelter to calm his nervous. Ok, that fair enough but when they pull into a gas station to find a place to stay the only thing the guy could tell them was about an old abanded house? Really that is all you have? And you are in hillbilly country why the hell would you pull over and be a squatter in some strange house?? Well ok then.
Great more country music to try and help this guy sleep. They seem so happy to be trespassing don't they? Now what they don't know is the evil in the basement awaits. See this group of spy's are trying to steal the code for rocket fuel. Yep, I get it... no, I don't what the hell is the point. Ok, what I do get is the country world jumped on the "Beach" movie movement that was going on over in the bubble gum pop movie section. If I liked Country this may have scored even better with me. It was just the fact that every 7 minutes or so we got a new song. And no lie how they brought these band's in during the first half of the movie was pretty funny.
The cast work's great together on screen the three country stars are believable that they are friends. But for me it was Lon Chaney Jr playing the muscle to Linda Ho's character that was excellent. And the bickering between them and Basil Rathbone along with John Carradine make the subplot the best part of the movie. The county bumpkins where the main stars, but they seemed to be the comic relief as well.
The house itself looks great and very spooky they way a haunted house should look. The house comes complete with hidden rooms framed pictures that move and an ape. You really get the sense of watching an Abbot and Costello style movie. No lie the first 60 minutes of this movie is really fun and entertaining to watch. The last 20 minutes was the Country Jamboree they were going to. And that is fine again if you like country music.
I do want to talk about Joi Lansing for just a moment. Lansing was known as the Blonde Bombshell thanks in part to her asset. I will admit for the 1960's she was very pretty and that lead to me looking into her career. It was no surprise to see the movies and tv show that she did like Singing in the Rain and Petticoat Junction. What was a shock to me was how she passed at such a young age of 43. She lost her battle with breast cancer August of 1972. The very thing that made her famous also took her life and to me that is so unfair.
Sadly if you take out all the music (The last 30 minutes of the movie is the Jamboree concert.) this movie would be less than an hour long. That makes Hillbillys a fast watch with not a whole lot of meat to it. But don't let that stop you this is still a very silly fun musical! In no way shape or form can I sit and tell you to skip this one. Its fun its entertaining and looks good. If you are into that old twangy country music this will fair even better for you! If you want to watch a Haunted House movie this one is not too bad.
But sadly for me it only gets...
|3 Bloody Brains|
This review is part of the Countdown to Halloween blog party check it out here.