Thursday, May 25, 2017

Diary of a Madman Movie Review

Diary of a Madman is a 1963 horror movie directed by Reginald Le Borg and starring Vincent Price and Nancy Kovack.

A man called Simon Cordier(Price) is being buried. A few people attend his funeral. He was a French magistrate. His last wish was for a group of people to assemble and read his diary. The story begins in 1886 and Simon is called to talk to a man who has killed people and is awaiting execution. He tells Simon that something made him murder people. He was possessed. He had no will of his own. Simon doesn't believe him. The man wants to die so the thing has no power over him anymore. He tries to kill Simon and there is a green light around his eyes. He struggles with Simon and then he dies. Simon is upset over it. When he goes home, someone has put a picture of his dead wife on the wall.
He thinks that it is a prank.

Simon puts it away in the attic. He sees the words 'hatred is evil' written in the attic. He thinks that it is another prank. His servant Pierre looks and there is nothing there. Simon wonders what is happening to hum. Things begin to happen and he hears laughing and talking. The voice speaks to him and it wants him now. He thinks that he is going insane. The green light comes into his eyes. The voice orders him to kill his pet bird and he does so. Afterwards, he is horrified. He goes to see the doctor and he tells him that it is his imagination. He tells him to do other things so Simon decides to go back to sculpting which he used to enjoy. He meets an art model called Odette(Kovack). She agrees to pose for him. She is married to an artist called Paul. Odette goes over to Simon's to pose.

He begins his sculpture and the two get on well together. He tells her that his wife killed herself. Later, when he is alone, the voice comes back to him. It tells him that it is called the horla. It tells him that he is a murderer. It tells him that he drove his wife to suicide. It tells him that he blamed her for the death of their son. It wants to take him over. It tells him to make Odette love him. Simon woos her and she wants to marry him. She leaves her husband for Simon. Paul is upset and his pal Jean tells him that Odette is greedy. Paul goes over to confront Simon. Paul warns Simon off. The voice tells Simon to kill Paul. Then it tells him to kill Odette. He obeys the voice and he kills her.

The next day, he sees blood in his house. There is a trail of blood. Odette's head is underneath the sculpture. He realises what he has done. The police arrest Paul for Odette's murder. The  horla makes him dispose of the body. Paul wants to talk to Simon. Simon denies that he knew Odette. Simon tries to kill himself but the horla stops him. Jean calls to see Simon and plead Paul's case. She threatens to make his servants talk to the police and get him into trouble. The horla orders him to kill her before she ruins his life. He goes after her wot a knife. He sees a priest and he is put off. The horla turns on him and tries to kill him. He calls Jean to his house and gives her a box with a letter in it explaining about his life and the diary. He waits for the horla. He sets fire to the house and it gets trapped. Simon tries to escape but he can't. The movie ends with the diary clearing Paul. The diary warns that wherever evil is, the horla lives.

I enjoyed this movie. It was good fun with some great scenes. Price is flawless as always and he is the reason that I watched this film. He plays the role perfectly of the tormented man who doesn't know what is happening to him. It is really entertaining and I would definitely recommend it! I will give it a 7/10.


Susan Leighton said...

Sir Vincent in what is another fine effort. I sometimes wish I had the power of the horla. You know for special circumstances. Good review, Jigs. This movie sounds crazy in a good way.

Amanda said...

Thanks, Susan. This is a good film with Price in great form in the lead role. I really enjoyed it. It was pure fun and even though the story was simple enough, it was entertaining. I am glad that I watched it!!

John Nada said...

Sir another great review. Vincent Price is an excellent actor. I enjoy most, if not all of his films. I will give this one another view. Thanks for the review, and the reminder.

Amanda said...

Thanks!!!I liked this a lot.I am working my way through Vincent Price films and I was very happy that I watched this one!

Blog Widget by LinkWithin