**½/**** Image B Sound B Extras D+
starring Christopher Lee, Peter Cushing, Nyree Dawn Porter, Denholm Elliot
screenplay by Robert Bloch
directed by Peter Duffell
by Bill Chambers Anthology films are by their very nature self-defeating--especially, it seems, when the individual stories are linked by a framing device rather than by a thematic spine. (The majority of Hammer also-ran Amicus' output vs. Pulp Fiction, for example.) As the Amicus production The House That Dripped Blood draws to a close, you can't contain the urge to crown a favourite chapter; the rest of the picture becomes a useless husk. Based on the works of Psycho author Robert Bloch, The House That Dripped Blood stars genre stalwarts Christopher Lee, Peter Cushing, John Pertwee, and still others (including an unrecognizably young Joss "Diplomatic Immunity!" Ackland) in separate tales all set inside a gothic manse that, we determine from interstitial vignettes, is unloaded on some steel-nerved rich dude roughly once a week by shifty real estate agent A.J. Stoker (John Bryans).