How Awful About Allan

How Awful About Allan

4.0 1
Director: Curtis Harrington

Cast: Curtis Harrington, Robert H. Harris, Joan Hackett, Julie Harris

     
 

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Director Curtis Harrington (The Killing Kind) teams with screenwriter Henry Farrell (Hush...Hush, Sweet Charlotte) for this quietly disturbing tale of a man driven to psychosomatic blindness by a horrific

Overview

Director Curtis Harrington (The Killing Kind) teams with screenwriter Henry Farrell (Hush...Hush, Sweet Charlotte) for this quietly disturbing tale of a man driven to psychosomatic blindness by a horrific family tragedy. Unable to cope with the fact that he has been blamed for the fire that killed his father and disfigured his sister (Julie Harris), psychologically unsound Allan (Anthony Perkins) is committed to a mental institution. Some time later, Allan is deemed fit for release and sent to live at his sister's house. But Allan's sister is far from happy to have her brother back home, and begins to sadistically toy with his fragile psyche to the point that he starts hearing disembodied voices and sensing an ominous presence. Could it be that Allan's father is actually reaching out for revenge from beyond the grave, or have Allan's sister's continued attempts to wear at her ailing brother's fragile psyche finally had the intended results.

Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Craig Butler
One of a number of television movies of the late 1960s and 1970s that blurred the distinctions between horror and psychological thriller, How Awful About Allan is an above average, generally engrossing little chiller. Exactly how much one enjoys will depend largely on one's fondness for "suspense by implication" rather than blood and gore and on whether one figures out the "twist" ending in advance. These caveats aside, the screenplay is a fairly intelligent piece of manipulation, emphasizing the ability of little touches to provide a sense of discomfort. Much of the film's success is due to Curtis Harrington's fine, balanced direction. Harrington is not afraid to alternate nuance with "shock" moments and believes in letting the pace draw out leisurely on occasion, the better to contrast with the "big" segments. He also uses a very effective "blurry lens" look to capture the point-of-view of the semi-blind protagonist, which has the added benefit of keeping secret the villain's identity for longer than would otherwise be possible. Some of the film has that flat "television" look to it, but overall it's fairly stylish. Allan's biggest asset, however, is its cast. Anthony Perkins, in a role that could have been nothing more than a re-hash of Norman Bates, finds numerous ways to distinguish the character and is a wonderful, solid anchor. Julie Harris is quite effective as his sister, and Joan Hackett brings a special quality to the role of the neighbor.

Product Details

Release Date:
02/26/2008
UPC:
0089218555694
Original Release:
1970
Source:
Alpha Video
Time:
1:14:00
Sales rank:
66,824

Cast & Crew

Scene Index

Disc #1 -- How Awful About Alan
2. Chapter 1 [8:10]
3. Chapter 2 [12:03]
4. Chapter 3 [11:40]
5. Chapter 4 [13:51]
6. Chapter 5 [12:20]
7. Chapter 6 [12:10]

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How Awful About Allan 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Horror stytlist Curtis Harrington cranks out a cool early 70s tv horror.Blind Anthony Perkins is released from an institution into his sister's care and eerie things start happening to him.Julie Harris and Joan Hackett co-star.