Name That Trauma:: Naja M on a Svengoolie Skeleton

Hi, The movie I am asking about is not one that scared me. I barely remember it. The reason I do want the name is because it’s the background of one of our most awesome childhood memories, and I really wish I had the name of the movie when I tell this story to people.

In the early 1970’s, I was 8 and my little brother was 7. We took a bus, by ourselves, 4 blocks down S. Ashland Ave to Chicago’s People’s Theatre on 47th Street to see a horror movie hosted by the ORIGINAL Svengoolie! Back then, an 8 year old could get into an R movie as long as they had money for a ticket. No one enforced the somewhat new ratings system. At that young age we were both already Svengoolie and horror movie fans because our babysitters loved to scare us on the weekends watching Svengoolie. We sat right up front in the old theatre watching Svengoolie do his thing in front of the movie screen. It was the time of our lives (up to that point haha).

Now for the movie. I barely remember it! I can remember there being a sit down dinner at a long table, possibly in a castle, but maybe an old mansion. Of course there was a pretty American blond at the table, as well as a few other Americans. They seemed to be visitors. The second (and only other) memory I have of the movie I think is near the end. A man is trying to get into a shed or cellar, maybe crawlspace. Once he gets the door open, the woman he loved is nothing but a skeleton and hair. The whole movie gives me a feel of Americans visiting England.

Does this ring a bell for anyone? I realize after this long that my memories may have taken on a life of their own.

Thanks! Naja M

P.S. This is my second submission over the past 10 years. Last time I think you got it after just a couple hours.

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3 months ago

I’m not 100% sure, but Mario Bava’s Lisa and the Devil came to mind as I read the description.

3 months ago

The first one I thought of was Terror At Red Wolf Inn which fits the time period but the skeleton scene doesn’t match up.

Ploppa Smerph
Ploppa Smerph(@ploppa-smerph)
3 months ago

I don’t know the movie myself, but epguides has a list of all Screaming Yellow Theater episodes if someone wants to cross reference.

3 months ago

SmallDarkCloud, I think “Lisa and the Devil” may be it. I went through the movie a bit (the whole thing is on youtube), and was reminded how the whole theatre laughed during the long table scene because Svengoolie timed it to be at the right spots on the theatre stage at the exact moments the women at the long table were looking down in his direction. As if they were actually watching a tiny Svengoolie on their table. haha! And, I found the female skeleton with hair. I was also reminded that at the end of the movie you find out they were all dead to begin with.

So with those matches, I’m concluding you got it right. Thank you! (cue loud thunderous applause) Now I have the movie name to go with our story of seeing the original Svengoolie in person.

3 months ago

I would have commented earlier, but I am firmly in the Rich Koz era of “Son of” Svengoolie”. I would have been a baby at the time of the original. Curious though – did the original Svengoolie invoke “Berwin” as a marker of lameness? Bless Rich Koz – a Chicago original.

Last edited 3 months ago by Chuckles72