|The shadow of the Tingler. Scream,|
scream for your life!
2. House on Haunted Hill - If five guests can spent the night in Vincent Price's haunted house, each will receive $10,000. Castle's big gimmick, dubbed “Emergo” (love the name!), was simply a skeleton on a wire which projectionists dropped over unsuspecting viewers during the film’s big shock scene. Again, the gimmick was only used in selected theaters, although it was recreated for a New York City film festival in 2010.
3. Scent of Mystery - Mike Todd, Jr. produced this light mystery about a novelist trying to save an heiress (an unbilled Elizabeth Taylor) from a murder plot. In selected theatres, over 30 aromas were piped in via plastic tubes at appropriate points in the film--this was dubbed “Smell-O-Vision.” There have also been other attempts to create smelly movies, the most famous being John Waters' campy Polyester, which took the low-tech route with scratch-and-sniff cards (Waters, who has a great appreciation of "B" cinema history, called his gimmick Odorama).
|If you can see these ghosts, you|
must be wearing your glasses!
5. Earthquake - The most expensive and large-scale gimmick (short of 3-D) was Sensurround, in which a film's soundtrack was amplified in certain scenes to cause a rumbling sensation. It also caused headaches. The first Sensurround film was the disaster flick Earthquake in 1974. It was followed by Midway (1976) and Rollercoaster (1977).
Honorable Mentions: Macabre (Castle offered a $1000 life insurance policy if anyone died of fright while watching the movie); Homicidal and Ten Little Indians (1965) paused the action momentarily for a "Fright Break" and a "Murder Minute," respectively; the otherwise forgettable thriller Wicked, Wicked was shot in "Duovision," meaning that almost the entire movie was shown in split-screen so the audience could follow simultaneously-occurring events; and, finally, Robert Montgomery filmed all of the Philip Marlowe mystery The Lady in the Lake in first-person (Marlowe is only glimpsed via reflections).