The Tingler

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Time Out says

A cultish chiller that acquired some fame on its original US release when Castle wired up the cinema seats with electrical buzzers to give his audiences a little extra shock value. The plot is ingeniously ludicrous: a doctor (Price) discovers that fear breeds a centipede-like organism in the base of the spine. The organism can kill if its grip is not released, and only a scream can do that. So the good doctor experiments on a deaf-mute, the wife of a cinema-owner who only shows silent movies. Castle was a real Hollywood showman, a downmarket Hitchcock whose work shows considerable flair. The scenes in the movie theatre are very striking, and the way the doctor torments his victim - by providing her with visual shocks (a kind of acid trip) and by causing running water from a tap to turn into blood (black-and-white gave way to colour here) - is clearly the work of a sick mind. Castle recalled, 'I was asked by somebody at Yale whether The Tingler was my statement against the establishment and whether it was my plea against war and poverty. I said, Who knows?'
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Release details

UK release:

1959

Duration:

82 mins

Cast and crew

Director:

William Castle

Cast:

Philip Coolidge, Darryl Hickman, Judith Evelyn, Vincent Price, Patricia Cutts

Music:

Von Dexter

Art Director:

Phil Bennett

Editor:

Chester W Scharffer

Cinematography:

Wilfred M Cline

Screenwriter:

Robb White

Producer:

William Castle

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