Cast & Crew
In 1885, noted London surgeon Dr. Bernard Hichcock accidentally administers an overdose of anesthetic to his wife, Margaret, during one of their sexually oriented "funeral games." Grief-stricken by her macabre death, he buries her and leaves his gloomy mansion. Twelve years later he returns with a new bride, Cynthia, and strange things occur: Martha, the housekeeper, explains that the nocturnal shrieks heard are the ravings of her mad sister whom she is harboring in the house; a skull is found on Cynthia's pillow; and a veiled woman is seen moving about the house and grounds. Learning that the veiled figure is Margaret, aged and withered from being buried alive, Hichcock once more becomes obsessed by his sexual mania and plots to murder Cynthia. She becomes suspicious, and, convinced that a glass of milk prepared for her by her husband is poisoned, she seeks the help of Dr. Lowe, her husband's assistant, who confirms her fears. Later, Hichcock attempts to drain Cynthia's blood in order to restore Margaret's youth, but Lowe comes to her rescue. In the ensuing fight a fire breaks out, consuming both Margaret and Hichcock.
Howard Nelson Rubien
Filmed in and around Rome. Opened in Rome in September 1962 as L'orribile segreto del Dr. Hichcock; running times: 88 and 100 min. Production and cast pseudonyms include: Louis Mann (Luigi Carpentieri and Ermanno Donati), Robert Hampton (Riccardo Freda), Julyan Perry (Ernesto Gastaldi), Donald Green (Raffaele Masciocchi), Frank Smokecocks (Franco Fumagalli), Donna Christie (Ornella Micheli), and Teresa Fitzgerald (Maria Teresa Vianello). Film has a sequel, The Ghost, q. v.