HOLLYWOOD HORROR HOUSE (1969) Reviews and overview

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‘A new high in Terror and Shock!’

Hollywood Horror House aka The Savage Intruder and Savage Intruder –  is a 1969 American horror feature film written, produced and directed by Donald H. Wolfe. The movie stars Miriam Hopkins (Doctor Jekyll and Mr. Hyde,1931), John David Garfield, Gale Sondergaard (The Black Cat; The Cat Creature; Echoes) and Florence Lake.

Blu-ray release:

On March 31st 2020, Vinegar Syndrome is releasing Hollywood Horror House as a region free Blu-ray + DVD combo, with the following special features below.

  • Newly scanned and restored in 4K from the 35mm camera negative
  • Historical commentary track with David Decoteau and David Del Valle
  • Promotional image gallery
  • Reversible cover artwork
  • English SDH subtitles


An elderly actress whose career ended in the 1930s lives in her decaying mansion with a retinue of bizarre people, including a personal assistant who keeps an arsenal of weapons…


“Unfortunately, the whole production cries out for some serious editing and faster pacing to make the suspense more compelling. In fact, a pair of sharp scissors were needed during the long, annoying music-cacophony sequences.” Alt Film Guide

Hollywood Horror House had everything in place to be either: 1. A mindless junk-parade, or 2. An affecting bit of smart exploitation. By constantly treading between the two but never fully committing to one, the film cancels itself out, feeling more like a compilation project rather than a finished statement.” Bleeding Skull!

“Here’s a deliriously entertaining mixture of Sunset Boulevard and Herschell Gordon Lewis movies, not to be missed. Pretty fascinating stuff and a ton of fun for camp addicts, this should really be better known than it is.” The Bloody Pit of Horror

“Worth seeing for the cast alone, Savage Intruder is a unique low-budget shocker that will please any Grindhouse fan. It’s far from the best in the “Aging Star Does Horror” genre, but you won’t be disappointed by this raunchy romp, filmed inside the Norma Talmadge Estate.” Cracked Rear Viewer

“The most chilling moments are when Vic appears affable and genuine only for his true nature to come out and the pretence is dropped like a sack of bricks. The third act is when this manage to take an even creepier turn, and without spoiling anything I’ll only say it evoked the same kind of chilling effect the opening of When a Stranger Calls (1979) produced for me – which is not to suggest there are story similarities; just a vibe.” Dread Central

” …once the psycho starts on his predictable rampage, the movie simply does nothing more than let him go on with it until he can’t anymore, and it does so with increasingly less suspense, point or purpose. In the final analysis, I found the movie vastly disappointing.” Fantastic Movie Musings and Ramblings

“The theme of a decaying Hollywood is obvious from the outset with some great shots of the legendary sign in a state of extreme disrepair, a solid metaphor for a time when the entire studio system was imploding and entire lots were about to be diced up and sold off. Of course, that whole aspect was mostly lost by the time most audiences saw this in the wake of the New Hollywood resurgence, but in its correct context, this is pretty fascinating stuff.” Mondo Digital

“For about the first hour, this contrast between the psychedelic generation and the older lonely boozehound works pretty well. Like The Night God Screamed, the older set’s fears about the hippie creeps are totally justified here! The gore effects are surprisingly good, considering it was filmed in 1969. Eventually, though, it starts to run out of steam, right about the point Vic starts holding Katherine hostage.” Rufus’s House of Horrors


Buy DVD: Amazon.com | Amazon.co.uk

Main cast and characters:

  • Miriam Hopkins … Katharine Packard
  • David Garfield … Vic Valance (as John David Garfield)
  • Gale Sondergaard … Leslie
  • Virginia Wing … Greta
  • Florence Lake … Mildred
  • Lester Matthews … Ira Jaffee (as Lester Mathews)
  • Riza Royce … Mrs Jaffee
  • Joe Besser … Bus Driver
  • Charles G. Martin … Doctor
  • Sybelle Guardino … Mother
  • Richard Guardino … Young Vic
  • Jason Johnson … Josef
  • Bill Welsh … TV announcer
  • Minta Durfee … Guest
  • Dorothy Kingston … First victim

Screen Shot 2016-04-03 at 00.09.26


Choice dialogue:

Vic Valance: “Here’s too lonely, rich, old bags!”

Vic Valance: “Tarnished silverware is so depressing.”

Film Facts:

The film’s working title was The Comeback.

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