Listening to the rain fall during the night is a pretty relaxing way to fall asleep. Listening to the rain in the early morning while watching a horror movie, that can up the creep factor some, though it would be better if it was a full storm with thunder and lightning. So with this being the setting I find myself in, I hope that this will help with today’s movie. See, I find myself watching another movie from the Pure Terror box set, and these have not exactly been good to me. So let’s see if some rain helps make today’s movie, The Dungeon Of Harrow, any better.
The plot: Aaron Fallon is on his father’s ship when a storm breaks out and the ship ends up getting caught among some rocks and capsizing. The next day, Aaron and the ship’s captain end up washed ashore, with the only thing from the ship they can find being a tapestry with the Fallon’s family crest. As the prepare to get some sleep for the night, they hear the sound of dogs barking and a woman screaming but when Aaron wants to try and save the woman, the captain pulls him back, saying that they don’t have any weapons to fend off what is out there. The next day, Count Lorente de Sade is chastising his servants, Mantis, for letting the dogs get out during the night and when Mantis tells him that the dogs killed a woman, Lorente is surprised to learn that someone was on the island and sends Mantis out to see if anyone else is there. After he leaves, Lorente sits at his desk and ends up hallucinating as a figure appears to torture him, showing that he is descending into madness. Meanwhile, Aaron and the captain are exploring and find the area where the attack occurred during the night. Suddenly, they are caught in a net and as they try to escape, they see Mantis nearby. The captain is knocked unconscious by a bolo while Aaron is beaten by Mantis and passes out. When Aaron comes too, he finds himself in a castle and the captain’s body lies on the floor. As Aaron goes to check on the captain, a woman, Cassandra, enters the room and says Lorente wishes to meet with him so Aaron puts the captain in the bed and leaves with Cassandra. She takes Aaron to the dining room, where Lorente is sitting and Aaron attempts to talk to Lorente but Cassandra says he doesn’t like to talk until after dinner. After he eats, Lorente speaks with Aaron for a but before telling Cassandra to take Aaron back to his room. Aaron takes the torch from Cassandra and says he can find his own way back to his room. After she leaves, Aaron starts to explore when he notices a blood trail and follows it to his room, where he finds the captain is missing and a puddle of blood in the bed. Aaron returns to the dining room to speak with Lorente and sees him go into another room. When Aaron follows him, he finds Lorente has disappeared and Cassandra chastises him for being in the chapel. Aaron asks her about the captain and she says that his injuries were more severe and he was taken away to be tended to, then has Aaron follow her out to a balcony to talk. When they separate, Aaron sees a woman being whipped and tries to enter the room but is unable to and when he looks in the window again, the woman is gone. Meanwhile, the captain is being tortured be Lorente, who chastises Mantis for giving the captain water. Lorente points to a girl, Ann, who he says was rendered mute by pirates and he accuses Ann of trying to poison him with his wine. He goes to force Ann to drink the wine but his servant stops him, so he pours the wine down the captain’s throat instead. The next day, Aaron confronts Cassandra about what he saw and demands the truth from her. Cassandra says that this started with the Countess de Sade, who was a leper and forced into exile. Lorente chose to go into exile with her but the Countess did not die, but instead went insane and ended up locked away in the castle’s dungeon. Lorente went mad from everything that happened and when Aaron asks how Cassandra wound up here, she tells him she was sent there due to her family’s debts. As they are talking, Ann comes up with a tray of drinks and Lorente follows shortly. Aaron warns Lorente not to harm Ann anymore and asks about the captain but Lorente says that the captain has died. Meanwhile, Mantis is watching over the captain in the dungeon and gives him some water but when the captain asks to be released from his bindings, Mantis refuses. Back in his room, Aaron is approached by Ann, who attempts to sleep with him but he politely turns her down. He then asks Ann if the captain is in the dungeon and asks that she take him there but she refuses. Ann sneaks down to the dungeon and hits Mantis over the head with a beam, knocking him unconscious, and then frees the captain, but he dies from his torture. Lorente witnessed her actions and places Ann in the rack, while telling Mantis to check and make sure the captain is dead. When Lorente tells Mantis to release the drip, in order to torture Ann, Mantis refuses at first but is forced to do it by Lorente, who then leaves with Mantis, leaving Ann to suffer her torture. Cassandra goes to Aaron’s room and talks with him, telling him that they do receive supplies from a ship every now and then but they would not be able to signal for help unless the Lorente was dead. Lorente and Mantis show up, and Lorente accuses Aaron of taking advantage of his hospitality and tells Mantis to escort Aaron to the sarcophagus. Meanwhile, the captain had apparently faked his death and tries to rescue Ann but, realizing that he needs a key, goes to confront Lorente. When the captain shows up, Lorente orders Mantis to kill him and the two fight, with the captain managing to wound Mantis before Mantis kills him. After the fight, Lorente has Mantis take Aaron into the sarcophagus, which houses the secret dungeon where the Countess is kept prisoner. After chaining Aaron to a wall, the two leave and Aaron watches as the Countess unlocks her cell and heads towards him, thinking that he is Lorente. She goes to kiss him but stops when she hears Cassandra calling her name and as she approaches her, Cassandra kills her. Cassandra frees Aaron and they quickly flee the castle, pursued by Mantis and Lorente. In the morning, Mantis collapses from a combination of exhaustion and his injuries so Lorente shoots him. Aaron appears and begins struggling with Lorente and manages to get the rifle and shoot Lorente with it. Aaron and Cassandra return to the castle to wait for the supply ship and after a year, it finally shows up, but when Aaron spots it, Cassandra does not seem happy and apologizes to Aaron. When they get to where the landing craft has beached, Aaron calls out to the men but the leader says they are lepers and he and his men quickly leave. Aaron turns to Cassandra, who tells him she noticed the effects months ago but never told him. Years later, Aaron finishes writing in his journal by saying that Cassandra has grown quite mad and he is afraid he must lock her away, then he motions for Cassandra and they head towards the chamber with the sarcophagus.
Ugh, the rain did not help. This was a terrible movie. The acting was pretty stale and somewhat robotic at times. The plot was confusing and the way the story was laid out did a terrible job at trying to explain what was going on. I don’t know if it was just my copy but the lighting and camera work were terrible, with the scenes alternating between really bright and really dark pretty constantly. All told, there are better movies out there that show people going mad so you would be better off finding one of them.
Rating: 1 out of 5