A Scream from the Past – The Fifth Floor (1978)

Today, I thought that I should start a post series about the horror movies that both amazed and scared me senseless, as I grew up and got me hooked to this stunning genre.

The first movie that I remember is, The Fifth Floor from 1978, with Bo Hopkins and Diane Hull in the leads. I recall that it prevented me to sleep, visit the basement or the shed on our backyard, for a very long time.

The plot revolves around a young woman, named Kelly McIntyre (Dianne Hull) who collapses at a bar.

Unaware that Kelly has been poisoned, in an attempt to cover up a murder, her doctor and boyfriend assumes that she’s crazy and admits her to the fifth floor, an asylum with heavily disturb patients and questionable nurturers.

Once on the fifth floor, Kelly is raped and becomes a witness to both suicides and murders and as she eventually manages to escape, she is dragged back despite her protest, to the gruesome events that occurs on the fifth floor.

The most shocking part of the movie, which managed to scare the living daylights out of me, was the suicide scene, which I still, around 25 years later, can remember in great detail. Another thing was that the plot seemed very genuine – it could actually happens to you, being locked in, even though you are perfectly sane, also frightened me.

Bo Hopkins played the vicious and brutal orderly Carl, in such a good way, that it me squirm of fear and dislike. I think that Hopkins performance alone makes this movie worth watching, if you can find it will say.

It was released on VHS back in 1991, and I have seen it on eBay for around 15 bucks or so, which I think is a valid price for this dramatic and ghastly thriller, which I still thought had a huge scare factor, when I saw it again as an adult.

Some fun facts about the movie, is that a certain Robert Englund played one of the mental patients and as you surely know, Englund later become the feared dream stalker Freddy Krueger, a couple of years later.

1 comment… add one
  • Brian

    I guess I’d have no choice but to watch it on VHS? I saw a DVD for sale, but I wonder about the quality, since it’s not released on DVD and had to be transferred somehow.

    I saw this movie in 1981 and the ONLY thing I remember about it is the girl hanging from a rope that had me frozen in terror.

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