Rent Carnival of Souls (1962)

3.6 of 5 from 102 ratings
1h 18min
Rent Carnival of Souls Online DVD & Blu-ray Rental
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Having inexplicably survived a car accident that left two friends drowned at the bottom of a river, Mary Henry (Candace Hilligoss) takes up a new job as a church organist in a quiet coastal town. But while she suffered no physical injuries, Mary begins to fear for her sanity. Haunted by nightmarish visions of a ghoulish-looking man, she is drawn to a derelict amusement park where the living dead await her...
, , , Art Ellison, , , , , , Steve Boozer, Pamela Ballard, Larry Sneegas, Cari Conboy, Karen Pyles, , , Mary Ann Harris, , Bill Sollner,
Herk Harvey
John Clifford, Herk Harvey
Classics, Horror, Thrillers
Release Date:
Run Time:
78 minutes
French, None
DVD Regions:
Region 0 (All)
Aspect Ratio:
Full Screen 1.33:1 / 4:3
Colour and B & W
Release Date:
Run Time:
78 minutes
English Hard of Hearing
Aspect Ratio:
Full Screen 1.37:1
B & W
BLU-RAY Regions:
  • Selected-scene audio commentary featuring director Herk Harvey and screenwriter John Clifford New interview with comedian and writer Dana Gould
  • New video essay by film critic David Cairns
  • The Movie That Wouldn't Die!, a documentary on the 1989 reunion of the film's cast and crew
  • The Carnival Tour, a 2000 update on the film's locations
  • Excerpts from movies made by the Centron Corporation, an industrial film company based in Lawrence, Kansas, that once employed Harvey and Clifford
  • Deleted Scenes
  • Outtakes, accompanied by Gene Moore's organ score
  • History of the Saltair Resort in Salt Lake City, where key scenes in the film were shot
  • Trailer

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Reviews (2) of Carnival of Souls

More titters than scares - Carnival of Souls review by Kurtz

Spoiler Alert

A relic of the drive-in cinema age, released in 1962 by a director who had up until then majored in health education films, “Carnival of Souls” is interesting nowadays only as an indicator of how far film-making and acting has come since the early sixties, and as a blueprint for the “caught-between -two –worlds” type thrillers like “Jacob’s Ladder”and “The Sixth Sense”.Other aspects have dated horribly, the stilted acting and the leaden dialogue, particularly in the less “intense” scenes, proving particularly hard to forgive. When things start to unravel for our heroine, there is admiiedly a vaguely spooky feel and the “Carnival” of the title is not somewhere you’d like to wander at night, but eye-rolling close-ups of lead actress Candace Hilligoss have you wriggling more in embarrassment than fear.

0 out of 1 members found this review helpful.

Genuinely unnerving - mild spoilers. - Carnival of Souls review by NP

Spoiler Alert

This is a modestly budgeted, black and white film directed, produced, written by and starring Herk Harvey. Often, when an entire production is placed in the hands of one person, the results can be questionable, with no-one available to advise the auteur that his ambition may need fine tuning. Happily, this is far from the case here. 'Carnival of Souls' has gained a huge cult following over the years, and quite rightly: it is excellent.

Beginning very much in the style of Hitchcock's 'Psycho (1960)', the narrative follows Mary Henry (Candace Hilligoss) as she stumbles from the sea after a car accident in which she appears to be the sole survivor. Trials and tribulations inevitably follow as she finds it difficult to continue her normal life, and her challenges in forming any emotional attachment - although having said that, her pursuer, greasy, arrogant John Linden (Sidney Berger) is an unpleasant, bullying character who doesn't disguise the fact he only wants to have sex with her. She sees figures, spectres, faces - the main ghoul is played, uncredited, by Harvey. His is the face most people remember from the film: pale, blackened eyed and leering, his is a truly unnerving presence.

The direction is first rate. Not only is a seaside town given a genuinely unnerving atmosphere, but the finale, filled with stuttering, staggering undead figures emerging from the abandoned carnival stays in the mind long after the credits have rolled.

If you have an interest in horror, you owe it to yourself to see this.

0 out of 0 members found this review helpful.

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