The Tomb of Ligeia (1964)

USA, UK, 1964
81m
35mm film, Colorscope, colour, 2.35:1
mono, English

An American/British horror film directed by Roger Corman. It is the last of Corman’s series of Edgar Allan Poe adaptations and was filmed entirely in the UK.

Plot Summary

Verden Fell is obsessed with his late wife, Ligeia and begins to wonder if she’s really as dead as he thinks she is. His new wife, Rowena, soon starts to show signs of having been possessed by a vengeful Ligeia.

Credits

Crew
Directed by: Roger Corman
© copyright by Alta Vista Film Productions Limited MCMLXIV [1964]
An Anglo-Amalgamated presentation [UK prints]. A Roger Corman production
Produced by: Pat Green [UK prints]
Screenplay by: Robert Towne
From the Story by: Edgar Allan Poe
Photographed by: Arthur Grant
Editor: Alfred Cox
Music Composed and Conducted by: Kenneth V. Jones
Sound Recordists: Bert Ross, John Aldred
Wardrobe Mistress: Mary Gibson
Make-Up Artist: George Blackler
Hairdresser: Pearl Orton
Special Effects: Ted Samuels
Art Director: Colin Southcott
Made at Shepperton Studios, Shepperton, England

Cast
Vincent Price (Verden Fell)
Elizabeth Shepherd (Lady Rowena [Trevanion] & the Lady Ligeia [Fell])
John Westbrook (Christopher Gough)
Derek Francis (Lord Trevanion)
Oliver Johnston (Kenrick)
Richard Vernon (Dr Vivian)
Frank Thornton (Peperel)
Ronald Adam (minister at graveside)
Denis Gilmore (livery boy)
Penelope Lee (Rowena’s maidservant)

Alternative Titles

Das Grab der Lygeia – Germany
Das Grab des Grauens – Germany
Grobowiec Ligei – Poland
Last Tomb of Ligeia
Ligeia
Mannen i vaxkabinettet – Sweden
Mies vahakabinetissa – Finland
Tomb of the Cat
La tumba de Ligia – Venezuela
La tomba di Ligeia – Italy

Press

1964

Kinematograph Weekly no.2980 (12 November 1964) p.16
In spite of being adapted from Poe, this is not one of Roger Corman’s best efforts because the plot is extremely tortuous and not quite swift enough to gloss over the impossibilities. It is good fun, though, and it is beautifully dressed and photographed with a fine sense of period and atmosphere. Vincent Price gives a typically smooth performance as the luckless Verden, and Elizabeth Shepherd achieves the remarkable by making the unlikely role of Rowena into an almost believable character. Both are helped by a script well above average. – from an uncredited review

References

Periodicals

  • Alien no.13 (January 1965) p.26 – review (Vision film review by Alan Dodd)
  • The Daily Cinema no.8988 (9 November 1964) p.3 – review
  • Film and TV Technician vol.32 no.256 (July/August 1996) – credits
  • The Hollywood Reporter vol.183 no.50 (20 January 1965) p.3 – credits, review
  • Kine Weekly no.2965 (30 July 1964) p.11 – note
  • Kine Weekly no.2980 (12 November 1964) p.16 – review
  • Monthly Film Bulletin vol.31 no.371 (December 1964) p.173 – credits, synopsis, review
  • Strange Adventures vol.2 no.7 (no.19 August 1990) pp.7-10 – illustrated article (The curse of Corman by Tony Cotterell)
  • Variety 20 January 1965 – credits, review
  • Video Watchdog no.24 (August 1994) pp.48-63 – illustrated interview

Books

  • American International Pictures: A Filmography by Robert L. Ottoson p.127 – credits, synopsis, review
  • The Aurum Film Encyclopedia: Horror edited by Phil Hardy (2nd edition) p.167 – credits, review
  • A Critical Guide to Horror Film Series by Ken Hanke pp.222-223; 224
  • An Edgar Allan Poe Companion: A Guide to the Short Stories, Romances and Essays by J.R. Hammond p.137
  • The Edgar Allan Poe Scrapbook edited by Peter Haining p.191 – article (Poe, Corman and Price: A Tale of Terrors by Ron Haydock)
  • English Gothic: Classic Horror Cinema 1897-2015 by Jonathan Rigby pp.140-141, 208, 262, 301
  • Feature Films, 1960-1969: A Filmography of English-language and Major Foreign-language United States Releases by Harris M. Lentz III p.478
  • The Films of Vincent Price by Iain F. McAsh pp.23; 44
  • Horror and Science Fiction Films IV by Donald C. Willis p.513
  • Merchant of Menace: The Life and Films of Vincent Price by Denis Meikle pp.216-221; 368
  • The Poe Cinema: A Critical Filmography by Don G. Smith pp.162-168
  • Reference Guide to Fantastic Films by Walt Lee p.496-497 – credits
  • Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Horror Film Sequels, Series, and Remakes by Kim R. Holston and Tom Winchester p.173-174
  • Sixties Shockers by Mark Clark and Bryan Senn pp.389-391
  • Vincent Price: The Art of Fear by Denis Meikle pp.128-133; 228
  • Vincent Price Unmasked by James Robert Parish and Steven Whitney pp.118-119; 224-225
  • Women in the Horror Films of Vincent Price by Jonathan Malcolm Lampley pp.111-120; 193