House on Bare Mountain (1962) Review

Spoiler-free so you can read before you watch

House on Bare Mountain (1962) Review

Horrorific content by TE Simmons on October 08th, 2021 | Movie Review | Comedy, Frankenstein, Campy, College, Werewolf, Dracula

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It’s about a nude girl’s school on Bare (get it?) Mountain.

House on Bare Mountain was directed by Lee Frost (of Chain Gang Women fame), written by Denver Scott (who has a grand total of zero other films crediting him in any capacity), and stars Bob Creese (from Love Camp 7 and The Pick-Up) and Laura Eden as Prudence Bumgartner, Abe Greyhound as Krakow the Werewolf. The credits also reveal that the hairstyles were coifed by “Hoover Vacuum” and Body Make-Up was applied by “Everybody.”

How lurid can you get?

House on Bare Mountain Review

House on Bare Mountain is nominally a comedy. But for the placement of Krakow the Werewolf in the basement, along with Dracula and Frankenstein’s monster attending a costume party, it is a film comprised of topless young women sunbathing, showering, and studying.

The correct genre label for House on Bare Mountain would be sexploitation – or, more specifically, cheeseball sexploitation. Or some would call it a “nudie cutie.” If you’ve ever watched Benny Hill reruns, you get the idea. It clocks in at just over 60 minutes but still seems interminable. Only the one-liners make it sufferable. Here is a sampling:

“She came from a broken home. It fell from the top of a cliff.”

“You can’t teach an old cow new tricks.”

“You’re all thumbs and hair” (addressing Krakow the Werewolf).

And just jn case you forget to laugh, there’s a “wah-wah-wah-waaah” muted trumpet to cue you after each joke.

Here’s the set-up: The protagonist is Granny Good (played by Bob Creese in drag channeling Jonathan Winters in his old lady sketches, and he actually does a pretty good job of it). Granny runs a mountaintop girl’s school, Granny Good’s School for Good Girls. But hidden in the dungeon is the real profit-center: a moonshine operation operated by Krakow, a werewolf. And there’s an undercover operative in their midst.

The way the camera frames the women actors by their parts (tops or bottoms) represents a mild, cartoonish, but insidious form of misogyny. It’s dreadful, the way camera shots sever breasts and derrières from bodies. There’s no gore; no knives. The camera itself detaches the women’s body parts to consider them independently of the body. It’s camera-work butchery.

Some horror films are so bad they come off as comedies. This is a comedy so bad that it comes off as horror. And if it doesn’t quite qualify as horror, it’s certainly horrible. If you want to get a sampling of this thankfully defunct sub-genre, this relic probably fits the bill. Just don’t expect to enjoy the experience.

Worth Watching?

Yes. But just barely. (“Wah-wah-wah-waaah!”)

House on Bare Mountain Review (1962) Worth Watching? - ALL HORROR Tweet it

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