Horror Fans: Is DON'T BE AFRAID OF THE DARK (1973) on DVD?

Discussion in 'DVD' started by Ronald Epstein, May 21, 2003.

  1. Ronald Epstein

    Ronald Epstein Administrator
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    Okay, I remember this GREAT movie I used to see
    all the time on TV as a kid. Thought it was the
    scariest movie I ever saw.

    I can't remember the name, but I'll describe it
    to you.

    A couple buys a new house. The wife soon finds
    out that there are creatures that live beneath
    the floorboards and in the cellar.

    She soon discovers the creatures are sensitive to
    light and don't come out unless its dark. She lights
    the house up with flashlights and candles to keep
    herself safe. However, the creatures cut the power
    lines to the house.

    In the end, she gets dragged down the stairs and
    eventually "joins" them.

    I believe this film was made in the 70s, and it
    probably was a made-for-TV film. I think the
    starring actress' first name was Kim.

    Anyone familiar with horror films should know
    what this is -- I just have totally forgotten the
    title.

    Anyhow, is it available on DVD?
     
  2. Ronald Epstein

    Ronald Epstein Administrator
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    I answered my own question.

    Went to IMDB.COM and did some fiddling
    around.

    Finally came up with....

    Don't Be Afraid Of The Dark

    It was a 1973 TV film starring Kim Darby.

    Doesn't look like it is on DVD.
     
  3. Jay E

    Jay E Cinematographer

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    Hey I loved this film as a kid too

    My brother and I still imitate the creatures when they are calling for Kim Darby:

    "Sally...Sally..."
     
  4. michael deakin

    michael deakin Stunt Coordinator

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    Hi Ron.
    Yeah i remember this film too. Quite scary, Shame about the ending. She really put up a fight.
    mike.
     
  5. Jack Briggs

    Jack Briggs Executive Producer

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    Isn't Carl Betz in this as well, playing Kim Darby's husband? And the little boy is the one from the old Family Affair sitcom on CBS.

    If I recall, there's a scene where Betz is looking at a film or a videotape of one of the front windows of his house. He sees a couple of red dots, "demon eyes." Pretty effective scene.
     
  6. Andy Sheets

    Andy Sheets Cinematographer

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    One of my family's favorites. I would love to be able to give a dvd of this to my sister someday. This movie scares the hell out of her [​IMG]
     
  7. michael deakin

    michael deakin Stunt Coordinator

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    Jack.
    The husband is played by "Jim Hutton".
    mike.
     
  8. Rex Bachmann

    Rex Bachmann Screenwriter

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    Jack Briggs wrote (post #5):

     
  9. Ronald Epstein

    Ronald Epstein Administrator
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    I think all of you will find this interesting....

    Miramax already has a remake of this film going
    into production. You can read more about it here:

    http://movies.yahoo.com/shop?d=hp&cf=prev&id=1808403782

    This should most likely bolster the chances for
    the original to be released to DVD.
     
  10. Malcolm R

    Malcolm R Executive Producer

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    Sounds like it could be especially cool with a good 5.1 mix. [​IMG]

    Seems like lots of decent horror films in the pipeline.
     
  11. Inspector Hammer!

    Inspector Hammer! Executive Producer

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    Ron,

    their are moments of incredible coincidence that don't happen very often in life and I just experienced one of them right now! [​IMG]
    When I saw your topic header, this is the first film I thought of since I saw it as a kid too and it scared the shit out of me, and like you, I coudn't remember the title until this thread. Imagine my shock when I read your post to see this was the very same film I was thinking of!

    Of all the horror films out their you could have been talking about, what are the odds!?

    I also remember very well how they sounded and looked, they had little brown shrunken heads with prune faces, and the one scene I remember most was her in the shower with the curtain drawn and the creatures walking around on the floor of the bathroom! [​IMG]

    I'd love to have this one on dvd, i'm also intriguied by the remake possibilities as well.
     
  12. Jack Briggs

    Jack Briggs Executive Producer

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    Rex: Excellent work! And that's exactly the made-for-TV film I remembered, down to a T. JB
     
  13. Claude North

    Claude North Second Unit

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    There were so many horror- and suspense-themed TV movies made in the 1970s that are deserving of a DVD release. Some were better than others, but all of them had a certain charm and, I suspect, have cult followings.

    A few examples:

    THE LEGEND OF LIZZIE BORDEN
    BAD RONALD
    THE INITIATION OF SARAH
    SOMETHING EVIL
    SUMMER OF FEAR
    HOME FOR THE HOLIDAYS

    How cool if a company like Anchor Bay could license several of them and release them as "Horror TV Classics" or under some such umbrella title.

    CN
     
  14. Jay E

    Jay E Cinematographer

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    Nice list Claude

    Another TV movie that scared the crap out of me was Fear No Evil with Louis Jordan, which was about a haunted antique mirror.

    The scariest TV movie I ever saw was the pilot film for Night Gallery, actually just the first episode with Roddy McDowall and the haunted painting.
     
  15. Eugene Esterly

    Eugene Esterly Supporting Actor

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    Summer Of Fear from 1978 (aka Stranger In Our House) is avaliable on Region 1 DVD. Summer Of Fear was released on DVD in Feb 2003.
     
  16. Jack Briggs

    Jack Briggs Executive Producer

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    There was an eerie 1971 made-for-TV movie about witchcraft, starring William Shatner. What was it called?

    Also, there was an adaptation of Zenna Henderson's science-fiction series about "The People" that was kind of effective.

    The early '70s was a fertile period for decent made-for-TV films, wasn't it?
     
  17. ScottR

    ScottR Cinematographer

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    Didn't this movie air as one of those afternoon movies (either on abc or nbc) that they used to show....they showed some scary movies on these afternoon programs (and no, I am not talking about the afterschool specials...lol)
     
  18. JayF

    JayF Stunt Coordinator

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    Jack- I remember a scary TV movie with William Shatner called "Horror at 40,000 Feet" or something like that. Must have played on the popularity of the Airport movies & had something to do with an evil spirit on an airliner. I remember something about glueing a woman's nailclippings to the tips of a doll so the spirit would think it was a human sacrifice or something. Weird.

    As for Don't be Afraid of the Dark... I remember that scary the heck out of me in the second grade. I could SWEAR I've seen it as a cheap DVD release at Best Buy.

    Other great childhood TV movies from the 70s were Gargoyles and Killdozer.
     
  19. Joseph J.D

    Joseph J.D Cinematographer

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    Yes, we definitely need more of these old 70s TV horrors on DVD. They can join stuff already out there like 'The Night Stalker/Night Strangler' and 'Trilogy of Terror'.....the source of many a childhood nightmare. Oh how I love those films- nothing quite like getting completely scared out of your wits as a kid after one of those shockers.[​IMG]
     
  20. TomF

    TomF Stunt Coordinator

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    I'm a member of the "this movie scared the crap out of me when I was little" club. It's even difficult to find on VHS. Would love to see it make DVD. It has quite a cult following. VHS "copies" show up at sci-fi conventions but I have heard they are pretty poor quality.

    As for the remake, I always get a little nervous when I hear of a subtle classic like this being remade with today's Hollywood sensibilities (ala The Haunting). I hope they don't change the ending. I could just see them turning it around to have the couple defeat the demons in a blaze of special effects.

    That ending scene of her being dragged, helpless (weakened by a sedative) to join the demons, slowing them down with the camera flash (they can't stand the light) but ultimately losing and her scream as she goes down...then her chilling voice-over at the end...that's what really made it stick with me.
     

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