THE HOUSE THAT DRIPPED BLOOD. Amicus Productions, UK, 1971. Christopher Lee, Peter Cushing, Nyree Dawn Porter, Denholm Elliott, Jon Pertwee, John Bennett, Ingrid Pitt, Chloe Franks. Screenplay: Robert Bloch. Director: Peter Duffell.

   This four-story-in-one horror film from Amicus has one major flaw, at least looking back upon it now. In spite of the title, there is no blood in it. It was, in fact, rated GP at the time of its release, the equivalent of today’s PG.

   It is possible to give the audience a few chills without a lot of gore, and that’s all the movie does: give the audience a few chills along with a few twists of plot, most of which are foreshadowed well in advance.

   The setting for all four segments is a common looking house in the English countryside, rather large but otherwise not very imposing. But it has its secrets, and each of those who rent it out find out what exactly that means.

   Part One: A writer of horror stories finds that one of the crazed killers he writes about is coming to life and haunting him, but his wife can neither see nor hear the man. The biggest twist in all four stories comes in this one.

   Part Two: A newly retired tenant (Peter Cushing) finds a waxwork museum in town with a figure of a woman inside whose face begins to haunt him. A friend who comes to visit falls under the spell of the waxwork face as well. A rather tepid tale with a easily foreseen ending.

   Part Three: A man (Christopher Lee) who rents the house with his very young daughter hires a tutor for her, a woman who soon learns that this is not a happy twosome she is working for, especially the daughter (a spellbinding Chloe Franks).

   Part Four and the underlying connection between all four segments: An inspector from Scotland Yard comes to the village looking for a famous movie actor (Jon Pertwee), who has disappeared, seemingly (as it turns out) under the spell of a vampire’s cloak. More special effects are used in this segment than any of the others, to little avail.

   There are lots of famous names in the cast, but the stories are both dull and obvious. Personally, I expected more from Robert Bloch, and I was disappointed.