Tuesday, 29 December 2015

Let's Scare Jessica to Death

"Let's Scare Jessica to Death" (1971, John D. Hancock, Paramount Pictures, The Jessica Company) is a film about an emotionally fragile woman who is experiencing strange visions and nightmares.

Jessica (Zohra Lampert) is recovering from a meltdown. She and her husband, Duncan (Barton Hayman), and their friend, Woody (Kevin O'Connor), have all given up their jobs and moved out to a farm in Connecticut known to the locals as 'The Ol' Bishop Place'.

Upon arriving there, they discover a squatter called Emily (Mariclare Costello) living in the house. Being 70s free spirits, they decide to let Emily stay because she can play guitar and stuff... Oh, and Woody fancies her.

Jessica is scared to tell the others, in case they think she's going crazy again, but she's begun to hear voices, see a mysterious blonde girl in a white dress and has been grabbed by pale, grasping hands under the water when swimming. When she's told an eerie tale by a local, she begins to see things fall in to place... or is it all just in her mind?

A slow chiller with a twisty and slightly confusing plot. This film is very much of its time, but still manages to have a few nice chilling scenes. On the whole, however, the title promises things that the end product does not deliver. And the story is definitely not what I was anticipating!

[Images: Paramount Pictures]