The Haunting of Morella (1990)

  • Year: 1990
  • Released: 09 Feb 1990
  • Country: United States
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  • IMDb:
  • Rotten Tomatoes:
  • Metacritics:
  • Available in: 720p,
  • Language: English
  • MPA Rating: R
  • Genre: Horror, Romance, Thriller
  • Runtime: 82 min
  • Writer: Edgar Allan Poe, R.J. Robertson, Jim Wynorski
  • Director: Jim Wynorski
  • Cast: Nicole Eggert, David McCallum, Christopher Halsted
  • Keywords: witch, cemetery, witch burning, possession, crypt, governess,
28% – Critics
28% – Audience

The Haunting of Morella Storyline

A witch is put to death in Colonial America, leaving her husband and infant daughter behind. Seventeen years later, the daughter has grown up and stands to inherit money set up by her mother’s family. Now that the stage is set, the mother wants to return to life by taking over her daughter’s body.—Ed Sutton

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The Haunting of Morella Movie Reviews

An Honest Review

Breasts. That is kinda what this movie was about. It was tailor made for a latch-key kid in the 90s to stay up late watching HBO to eventually see breasts.


It delivered that.

There was some plot about an evil witch and breasts. Something about a love affair and breasts. There were a few deaths and breasts and…

…yes, there was a thong despite the fact it takes place a long time ago before there were thongs and…yes, breasts.

What you have here is really a movie about breasts, but, it is a period piece Lovecraftian movie about breasts.

So if you want breasts, this is the movie for you, especially since it really makes no effort whatsoever to pass itself off as anything but a movie about breasts.

Breasts. You really have to appreciate that honesty.

Not Too Poor But Not Too Poe

If the blind recluse Gideon Locke seems a tad depressed and bewildered in 1990’s “The Haunting of Morella,” I suppose he’s got reasonable enough cause. Seventeen years earlier, his beautiful wife Morella had been crucified and eye-gouged to death for the crime of witchcraft (in an opening scene that still pales in comparison with the similar one in Mario Bava’s 1961 horror classic “Black Sunday”), and now, his look-alike daughter Lenora is beginning to show signs of possession. This by-now-familiar storyline has been padded out with gratuitous (but always welcome!) nudity, lesbianism, mucho gore and various gross-out FX to the point where any resemblance to Poe’s short short story “Morella” is glancing at best. This being a Roger Corman production, the film has been put together on the cheap, but typical for Corman, still manages to look handsome enough. In her dual roles as Morella and Lenora, Nicole Eggert proves something of a mixed blessing. She is OK in the evil witch role, but hardly seems a proper young 19th century British lass; more like a whiny Valley girl. As her towering and murderess governess, Lana Clarkson literally stands out in this cast. Her nighttime waterfall tryst with servant girl Maria Ford is a hoot and a half, as I’m not certain that Frederick’s of Hollywood existed 200 years ago! Best of all, of course, is my main man, David McCallum, as Lenora’s reclusive father. Blind, unkempt and constantly rattled, he is here as different a character as can be imagined from supercool U.N.C.L.E. agent Illya Kuryakin. Anyway, while nothing great, “The Haunting of Morella” should prove just fine for an evening’s entertainment. Oh…I just love the name of the actor who passes sentence on Morella in the film’s opening scene: Clement von Franckenstein!


Well, let’s get this out of the way. BOOBS. Lots of BOOBS. As a woman, I am not personally impressed by boobs so trying to rely on that as a selling point for a film is just tacky to me. Now that’s out of the way, I’ll talk about the actual movie.

What I liked: *The setting. *The way it was shot. Some of the scenes were really shot beautifully. *The costumes were nice with the exception of a scene that shows underwear that doesn’t suit the era. *The story.

What I didn’t like: *Some of the acting was pretty bad. *The script was lousy but it may have come across lousy at times because the acting was so off. *The amount of boob-age.

This wasn’t downright awful, to me but it left something to be desired. It really could’ve been so much more because there really is a story there. Maybe someone will take another stab at this one someday.