THE STRANGLER OF BLACKMOOR CASTLE (1963) Reviews and overview

The Strangler of Blackmoor Castle is a 1963 German krimi murder mystery film directed by Harald Reinl (Castle of the Walking Dead; The Sinister Monk) from a screenplay by Ladislas Fodor and Gustav Kampendonk. The story is based on a novel by Bryan Edgar Wallace.

The movie stars Karin Dor, Harry Riebauer,  Rudolf Fernau, Hans Nielsen and Dieter Eppler (Slaughter of the Vampires).

The distinctive electronic score was composed by Oskar Sala using the instrument he invented, the trautonium (also used in Hitchcock’s The Birds, the same year) which pre-dated the synthesizer (later used for many movie scores).


” …an entertaining, black & white entry with elements interchangeable with the horror genre. Aside from the masked menace and the adequately gothic castle, there are several beheadings, resulting in severed heads with the letter “M” marked on the forehead (one of the heads is delivered in a parcel package!).” DVD Drive-In

“Looking at it, it’s hard to believe the formula for the type of films we know and love was already firmly set in place years before, but it’s true. The killer is effectively creepy, the music sets a great, disturbing mood, and the film has enough gothic set pieces to keep audiences enthralled.” Oh, the Horror!

“It’s krimi time again, and this is a good one. Like most krimis, it gets confusing during the middle section and it has too many characters, but the musical score is unique and effective, the comic relief (a Scottish landlord) is fairly decent, and it’s full of effective touches and scenes.” Fantastic Movie Musings and Ramblings

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“The plot is serviceable, but the characters are blandly drawn, and the action sequences few and far between. Only Dor musters some charisma, and the scene where she’s terrorized by an electric drill is the best moment here.” The Terror Trap

Cast and characters:

Karin Dor … Claridge Dorsett
Harry Riebauer … Inspector Jeff Mitchell
Rudolf Fernau … Lucius Clark
Hans Nielsen … Tavish
Dieter Eppler … Anthony the Butler
Hans Reiser … Mike Pierce
Richard Häussler … Doctor Tromby
Walter Giller … Edgar
Ingmar Zeisberg … Judy
Peter Nestler … Tom
Gerhard Hartig … Watson
Albert Bessler … Sebastian – the Gardener
Werner Schott
Carl de Vogt … Doctor
Stephan Schwartz … Philip – ‘Phips’ (as Stefan Schwartz)
Lotti Alberti … Frau am Grab (uncredited)
Klaus Miedel … Voice of Strangler of Blackmoor (voice) (uncredited)
Egon Vogel … Postmaster (uncredited)

Original title:

Der Würger von Schloss Blackmoor

Some image credits: The Dwrayger Dungeon