“That house is not fit to live in. No one’s been able to live in it. It doesn’t want people.” That sounds like a challenge. Join your faithful Grue-Crew – Chad Hunt, Bill Mulligan, Crystal Cleveland, and Jeff Mohr – as they discuss The Changeling (1980), the ghost story held in high regard by no less than Martin Scorsese (who named it one of the scariest movies of all time) and Guillermo del Toro.
Decades of Horror 1980s
Episode 225 – The Changeling (1980)
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After the death of his wife and daughter in a car crash, a music professor staying at a long-vacant Seattle mansion is dragged into a decades-old mystery by an inexplicable presence in the mansion’s attic.
- Director: Peter Medak
- Writers: (screenplay by) William Gray & Diana Maddox; (story by) Russell Hunter
- Music: Rick Wilkins
- Cinematographer: John Coquillon (director of photography)
- Production Design: Trevor Williams
- Selected Cast:
- George C. Scott as John Russell
- Trish Van Devere as Claire Norman
- Melvyn Douglas as Sen. Joseph Carmichael
- John Colicos as DeWitt
- Jean Marsh as Joanna Russell
- Barry Morse as Doctor Pemberton
- Madeleine Sherwood as Mrs. Norman
- Helen Burns as Leah Harmon
- Frances Hyland as Mrs. Grey
- Eric Christmas as Albert Harmon
- Roberta Maxwell as Eva Lingstrom
- Bernard Behrens as Robert Lingstrom
- James B. Douglas as Eugene Carmichael
- J. Kenneth Campbell as Colin
- Janne Mortil as Linda Grey
- Terence Kelly as Sgt. Durban
- Michelle Martin as Kathy Russell
- Antonia Rey as Estancia
- Louis Zorich as Stewart Adler
- Voldi Way as Joseph’s Ghost
The Grue-Crew settle in to tackle a slick, confident – and criminally overlooked – haunted house feature from 1980, The Changeling. The film earns its respect as a classic film and its place as a cult favorite capturing the very first Genie Award for Best Canadian Film from the Academy of Canadian Cinema & Television. The film’s stars, George C. Scott and Trish Van Devere claim Best Foreign Actor and Best Foreign Actress respectively as The Changeling sweeps five additional awards during the inaugural presentation. Yet, many are unaware of the film and its influence on horror movies and Canadian film. In this episode, the Grue-Crew share their opinions and appreciation for Peter Medak’s best work.
Every two weeks, Gruesome Magazine’s Decades of Horror 1980s podcast will cover another horror film from the 1980s. The next episode’s film, chosen by Bill, will be The Company of Wolves (1984), directed by Neil Jordan and starring Sarah Patterson, Angela Lansbury, and David Warner.
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