Movie Name: Terrified
Studio: Bern-Field Productions
Release Date(s): May 1, 1963
MPAA Rating: Not Rated
A masked killer is stalking the town. Marge (Tracy Olsen) suffered a loss when her brother was buried alive in cement at the cemetery known as Ghost Town. As she tries to find out what happened to her brother, she is courted by David (Steven Drexel) and Ken (Rod Lauren). Going to Ghost Town, Marge, David, and Ken learn that the killer is hiding there…and the killer wants to tap into their greatest fears.
Directed by Lew Landers (his final film), Terrified is a horror mystery thriller. The movie is in the public domain and often found in multipacks.
Terrified is one of those generic movies. The film often feels like a Mystery Science Theater 3000 type of movie with tons of a laughable moments…and for a movie all about the effect of “terror” on people, it isn’t very terrifying.
In this aspect, the plot doesn’t even really work. The character seems bent on pushing people beyond their limits of terror…it is the character’s modus operandi, but by the end of the movie, you learn that Wesley Blake (played by Stephen Roberts) wants to get with Marge and is killing her suitors. It doesn’t make much sense with the style of killing…I also like how the characters are pursuing the dangerous killer only armed with flashlights.
The acting for the movie is all very B-Movie level. You have the “perfect girl” who even strangers comment on how perfect she is and she’s caught between two men…in a murder movie, that isn’t going to go well so it is pretty obvious that Tracy Olsen is going to have to decide on a love interest between Rod Lauren and Steve Drexel…and the chemistry between both characters isn’t there for Olsen. The twist with Stephen Roberts also seems to come out of left field and doesn’t seem to fit in with the rest of the overly complex story.
Visually the movie is pretty poor. The ski-mask killer is kind of modern, but the lighting and the Ghost Town sets are too dark to take advantage. A good chunk of the movie is spent in a restaurant set that looks like it came out of a ’50s or ’60s sitcom.
Terrified isn’t a good movie…often it is marketed as Terrified! The exclamation point is about as exciting as it gets for the film. It isn’t the worst movie ever made and there are some good laughable moments, but don’t head into Terrified to be shocked…it maybe should have been called Mundane!