7.2/10
773
21 user 11 critic

The House of the Seven Gables (1940)

Fighting over an inheritance, one Pyncheon brother frames the other for murder.

Director:

Joe May

Writers:

Lester Cole (screen play), Harold Greene (adaptation) | 1 more credit »
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Nominated for 1 Oscar. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
George Sanders ... Jaffrey Pyncheon
Margaret Lindsay ... Hepzibah Pyncheon
Vincent Price ... Clifford Pyncheon
Dick Foran ... Matthew Holgrave
Nan Grey ... Phoebe Pyncheon
Cecil Kellaway ... Philip Barton
Alan Napier ... Fuller
Gilbert Emery ... Gerald Pyncheon
Miles Mander ... Deacon Foster
Charles Trowbridge ... Judge
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Storyline

In 1828, the bankrupt Pyncheon family fight over Seven Gables, the ancestral mansion. To obtain the house, Jaffrey Pyncheon obtains his brother Clifford's false conviction for murder. Hepzibah, Clifford's sweet fiancée, patiently waits twenty years for his release, whereupon Clifford and his former cellmate, abolitionist Matthew, have a certain scheme in mind. Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

quill pen | trees | well | sign | dress | See All (110) »

Taglines:

AN ANCIENT HOUSE! A MURDER SECRET! A HIDDEN TREASURE! (original print ad - all caps)

Genres:

Drama | Thriller

Certificate:

See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

12 April 1940 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

A Casa das Sete Torres See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$178,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Universal Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Vincent Price was brought in at the last minute to substitute for Robert Cummings, who had become indisposed through illness. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Trumbo (2007) See more »

Soundtracks

THE COLOR OF YOUR EYES
(1940)
Music by Frank Skinner
Lyrics by Ralph Freed
Sung by Vincent Price (uncredited)
See more »

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User Reviews

 
I liked it
17 August 2017 | by utgard14See all my reviews

Gothic melodrama from Universal, adapted from the Nathaniel Hawthorne novel (with significant changes) about the cursed Pyncheon family and one brother framing another for murder. Often included in Universal horror discussions, though it's not a horror film. It does have some nice atmosphere in keeping with that genre, though, particularly given that it shares the same look and feel of the Universal horror films being made around that time.

Margaret Lindsay, an often underrated actress who never really hit it big, isn't entirely convincing in the early scenes as the innocent young Hepzibah. She really brings it when the plot moves forward and she becomes older and more jaded. Vincent Price does well in one of his earliest big roles. George Sanders reportedly didn't care for his role or the film but you would never know it by his great turn. Dick Foran holds his own against far more talented co-stars.

None of the changes to the novel seem to hurt it, in my opinion. It's a very enjoyable film. Even though it's not a horror movie, I do think it will appeal to people who like those Universal classics. Some nice atmosphere, a good story, and a great cast.


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