Director William Castle loved his gimmicks as much as he loved scaring audiences. For his 1960 movie 13 Ghosts he came up Illusion-O glasses. These glasses contained a blue filter and a red filter. If you wanted to see all the ghosts in the film, you looked through the red filter. If you were too scared to watch the ghosts, you could look through the blue filter and you wouldn’t see the ghosts.
Donald Woods starred as Cyrus Zorba, who finds out that his uncle Dr. Plato Zorba (Roy Jenson) has died and left his house to him. Cyrus brings his family to the new home. His wife Hilda (Rosemary DeCamp), daughter Medea (Jo Morrow) and son Buck (Charles Herbert). The house comes with a creepy maid named Elaine (Margaret Hamilton) oh and twelve ghosts.
Along with the ghosts, who are trapped in the house until a 13 ghost sets them free, there is a fortune buried in the house somewhere. Soon the whole family are running into ghosts.
There is a wailing lady ghost, clutching hands, a fiery skeleton, an Italian chef who is murdering his wife and her lover in the kitchen, a hanging lady, an executioner holding a severed head, a lion with a headless tamer, a floating head and good old Dr. Plato Zorba. To make matters worse someone else in the house and they are trying to find the treasure and maybe add a couple more ghosts to the house.
I love William Castle movies. Yes they all have a cheesy gimmick but they are fun and pretty good despite themselves. There is a remake of this film from 2001 but it’s just not the same.