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Encyclopedia > Dementia 13
Dementia 13

Directed by Francis Ford Coppola
Produced by Roger Corman
Written by Francis Ford Coppola
Starring William Campbell
Patrick Magee
Luana Anders
Music by Ronald Stein
Cinematography Charles Hanawalt
Editing by {{{editing}}}
Distributed by American International Pictures
Released 1963 (U.S. release)
Running time 75 min
Language English
Budget $42,000 (estimate)
Preceded by {{{preceded_by}}}
Followed by {{{followed_by}}}
IMDb profile

Dementia 13 is a horror thriller released in 1963 by American International Pictures, starring William Campbell, Patrick Magee, and Luana Anders. The film was written and directed by Francis Ford Coppola and produced by Roger Corman. Francis Ford Coppola at Cannes 2001 Francis Ford Coppola (born April 7, 1939 in Detroit, Michigan) is an American film director, screenwriter, vintner, magazine publisher, and hotelier, most renowned for directing the highly regarded Godfather trilogy. ... Roger William Corman (born April 5, 1926) is an American producer and director of low-budget films. ... Francis Ford Coppola at Cannes 2001 Francis Ford Coppola (born April 7, 1939 in Detroit, Michigan) is an American film director, screenwriter, vintner, magazine publisher, and hotelier, most renowned for directing the highly regarded Godfather trilogy. ... For the fictional Paul McCartney lookalike, see William Shears Campbell. ... Patrick Magee (31 March 1924 - 14 August 1982) was a Tony Award winning British actor best known for his collaborations with Samuel Beckett and his role as the victimised writer Mr Alexander in Stanley Kubricks film A Clockwork Orange. ... American International Pictures was formed in 1956 from American Releasing Corporation by James H. Nicholson and Samuel Z. Arkoff, dedicated to releasing independently produced, low-budget films, primarily of interest to the teenagers of the 1950s. ... 1963 (MCMLXIII) was a common year starting on Tuesday (link will take you to calendar). ... The English language is a West Germanic language that originates in England. ... DVD cover showing horror characters as depicted by Universal Studios. ... The thriller is a genre of fiction in which tough, resourceful, but essentially ordinary heroes are pitted against villains determined to destroy them, their country, or the stability of the free world. ... 1963 (MCMLXIII) was a common year starting on Tuesday (link will take you to calendar). ... American International Pictures was formed in 1956 from American Releasing Corporation by James H. Nicholson and Samuel Z. Arkoff, dedicated to releasing independently produced, low-budget films, primarily of interest to the teenagers of the 1950s. ... For the fictional Paul McCartney lookalike, see William Shears Campbell. ... Patrick Magee (31 March 1924 - 14 August 1982) was a Tony Award winning British actor best known for his collaborations with Samuel Beckett and his role as the victimised writer Mr Alexander in Stanley Kubricks film A Clockwork Orange. ... Francis Ford Coppola at Cannes 2001 Francis Ford Coppola (born April 7, 1939 in Detroit, Michigan) is an American film director, screenwriter, vintner, magazine publisher, and hotelier, most renowned for directing the highly regarded Godfather trilogy. ... Roger William Corman (born April 5, 1926) is an American producer and director of low-budget films. ...

Contents


Plot

One night, while out row boating in the middle of a lake, John Haloran (Peter Read) and his young wife Louise (Luana Anders) argue about his rich mother's will. Louise is upset that everything is currently designated to go to charity in the name of "a mysterious Kathleen." John tells Louis that if he dies before his mother does, she will be entitled to none of the inheritance. He then promptly drops dead from a massive heart attack. Thinking quickly, the scheming Louise throws the fresh corpse over the side of the boat, where it comes to rest at the bottom of the lake. Her plan is to pretend that he is still alive, in order to ingratiate her way back into the will. She types up a letter to Lady Haloran (Eithne Dunne), inviting herself to the family's Irish castle while her husband is "away on business".


Upon arrival, she immediately notices that things are a little strange in the castle. She observes John's two brothers, Billy (Bart Patton) and Richard (William Campbell) taking part in a bizarre ceremony with their mother as part of a yearly ritualistic tribute to their youngest sister, Kathleen, who died many years before in a freak drowning accident. Lady Haloran still mourns for her, and during this year's ceremony, she faints dead away. Louise tries to help, but is rebuffed and informed that the reason the woman fainted is because she noticed that the flowers on Kathleen's grave had suddenly died.


Louise, realizing that Lady Halloran is emotionally overwrought and superstitious, devises a plan intended to convince the old woman that Kathleen is trying to communicate with her from beyond the grave. This plan involves stealing some of the dead girl's old toys and placing them at the bottom of the estate's pond where they will float to the surface in the middle of the day in an ostensibly ghostly way. At night, Louise swims into the pond and begins placing the toys as planned. However, she is shocked to see what appears to be Kathleen's perfectly preserved corpse at the bottom of the pond. Horrified, she swims to the surface...and is abruptly axed to death by an unknown assailant.

Patrick Magee and William Campbell
Enlarge
Patrick Magee and William Campbell

Concerned family doctor Justin Caleb (Patric Magee) arrives and becomes determined to solve the mystery. He questions the family in an intense, almost insane manner. Meanwhile, the murderer strikes again, decapitating a man who is poaching on the estate.


Finally, Dr. Caleb figures everything out with the aid of an obscure nursery rhyme, and manages to confront and stop the madman before he can kill again...


Production

Coppola worked as a soundman on Corman's The Young Racers (1963), a racing film which starred Campbell and Magee. That movie was shot in several different countries, and after production was completed Coppola talked Corman into allowing him to remain in Ireland with a small crew and direct a low-budget horror film, to be produced by Corman. Coppola wrote the screenplay in only a few days to help convince Corman that he'd be able to handle the responsibilities. Corman was impressed enough by the script to provide Coppola with a fairly measly $20,000, and the young director was able to arrange an additional $22,000 in financing himself. Although Coppola had been involved in a few nudie films previously, Dementia 13 served as his first mainstream, "legitimate" directorial effort. Nudie films were a 1950s genre of films, popular in Europe and the USA. Because of ruling censorship laws, the only open cinematic displays of nudity were naturist (nudist camp) quasi-documentary films. ...


Response

Despite a rushed production and a somewhat incomprehensible screenplay, Dementia 13 has managed to receive a considerable amount of positive critical reviews over the years. Michael Weldon, in The Psychotronic Encyclopedia of Film, noted it had "[A] great trick ending, some truly shocking gory axe murders, and lots of inventive photography." Tom Raynes, in the Time Out Film Guide, said "The location (an Irish castle) is used imaginatively, the Gothic atmosphere is suitably potent, and there's a wonderfully sharp cameo from Patrick Magee..." Danny Peary, in his Guide for the Film Fanatic, stated that despite the "hopelessly confusing" storyline, "...the horror sequences are very exciting."


When the Roan Group released a laserdisc and DVD of the film, it included an amusing and informative audio commentary by Campbell. Pioneers LaserDisc Logo Laserdisc certification mark The laserdisc (LD) was the first commercial optical disc storage medium, and was used primarily for the presentation of movies. ... DVD-R writing/reading side DVD-R with purple dye, 4. ... A major selling point of DVD video is that its storage capacity allows for a wide variety of extra features in addition to the feature film itself. ...


External links


  Results from FactBites:
 
Dementia and Depression. (8652 words)
In this prospective double-blind study 13 hospitalized older adults with dementia syndrome of depression (DSD) were compared to 14 with Alzheimer's dementia with a concurrent major depression on a battery of neuropsychological tests.
Further work is needed to examine depression as a prodrome of vascular dementia, depression as an early reaction to perceived cognitive decline, the effects of depression on the threshold for manifesting dementia, and depression as a source of hippocampal damage through a glucocorticoid cascade.
In addition to Alzheimer's disease, vascular dementias, Parkinson's disease, Lewy body dementia, Huntington's disease, and frontal lobe dementia, the impact of depression on cognitive functioning is covered given the frequency with which neuropsychologists are asked to differentiate depression from primary dementia.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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