Crowhaven Farm (1970 film)

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Scene from Crowhaven Farm (1970 film)

Summary

"A chilling tale of vengeance from beyond the grave." A young couple inherits a farm. Hoping that the rural location might help to patch up their strained marriage, they move into it, only to be confronted by the supernatural forces that inhabit it.

Details

  • Release Date: 1970
  • Country/Language: US, English
  • Genres/Technical: Thriller, Mystery, Horror (Gothic horror), made-for-TV
  • Setting: 1970s Brampton, Massachusetts USA
  • Runtime: 1 hr 15 min
  • Starring: Hope Lange, Paul Burke, Lloyd Bochner
  • Director: Walter Grauman
  • Writer: John McGreevey
  • Producer/Production Co: ABC, Aaron Spelling Productions
  • View Film: (link)
  • IMDB Page: (link)

Ratings

MPAA Ratings

  • Rated: (not rated) (equivalent to TV-PG for very mild 1970s TV-friendly Violence, and very mild Adult Content)

Probably equivalent of a TV-PG, though there's no gore, and any "Adult Content" would be buried far enough in subtext that many adults are likely to miss it, and it might have once qualified for a "G" rating.

Tentacle Ratings

A rough measure of how "Lovecraftian" the work is:

  • s____ (One Half Tentacle: Not very Lovecraftian)

The period costumes in flashback and melodramatic (if slowly-paced) themes of witchcraft and reincarnation might suggest the "Lovecraftian" to some viewers, but really there's not much more to it than than that.

Note: This rating is not intended as a measure of quality, merely of how closely related to Lovecraftian "Weird" fiction the work is.

Reviews

Review Links:

  • A Haunting on the Screen (link) - "This is a great example of 70s TV movies that I love so much. We have a great story, plenty of spooky atmosphere in and around the farm and lots of thrills and chills."
  • Kindertrauma (link) - "Aside from cranking out some of the finest prime-time soap operas to ever grace the small screen, uber producer Aaron Spelling also had a hand in executive producing some of the more memorable supernatural movies-of-the-week in the ‘70s."
  • Amanda by Night at Made-for-TV Mayhem, (link) - "The film unfolds nicely, if also predictably, because some of the foreshadowing hits you over the head with a frickin' mallet. An aside: It’s so funny how TV movies can be such an intimate experience (coming straight into your living room), but the films often take the more obvious approach to storytelling."
  • Richard Scheib, (link) - "The main problem with Crowhaven Farm is that not a lot seems to make sense in terms of what is happening. It is a film that seems based around creating much in the way of sinister effect – mysterious deaths, strange girls and sinister behaviour upon the parts of the locals – but not much in the way of underlying rationale for it.... [star] Hope Lange gives a dull performance, where she seems to move blandly through the film without much in the way of expression...."
  • Shaun Anderson at Celluloid Highway, (link) - "...Marked by a certain blandness - perhaps 'bland' is being a beat generous, ...dull as ditchwater. The inspiration for Crowhaven Farm is clearly Rosemary's Baby (1968 film)... simply substitute a satanic cult for a coven of witches and you have your latest TV movie.... The notion of a reincarnated witch being punished by the coven she betrayed centuries ago is intriguing, but the premise is constantly undermined by soap opera dialogue, ridiculously intrusive music..., and a series of uncommitted performances.... Despite running for a mere 75 minutes the laboured pace of Crowhaven Farm is a major weakness, as is a plot that does not hold up to even the slightest scrutiny...."
  • Rick29 at Classic Film and TV Cafe, (link) - "For me, the most effective supernatural thrillers are those grounded in normal characters who become gradually exposed to unnatural events. In the case of Crowhaven Farm, the casting of Hope Lange as Maggie helps immeasurably. It's hard to think of an actress more capable of portraying conventional and believable characters.... Her convincing performance in Crowhaven Farm is one of the reasons this film has lingered with me since I first saw it 46 years ago.... Watching it recently, though, I was also struck by the film's potency. While it's never gory, the image of the witches stacking stones on top of Maggie is pretty strong stuff...."
  • Made for TV Mayhem Podcast - Episode 25: That Old Black Magic! (link)

Synopsis (SPOILERS)

 Spoiler Section (Highlight to Read)

A childless couple inherits and moves into a Massachusetts farm, hoping that the rural location might help to patch up their strained marriage, only to be confronted by the supernatural forces and sinister townsfolk that inhabit it: the wife is the reincarnation of a Puritan woman who betrayed the coven that promised her a child.


Notes

Comments, Trivia, Dedication

Associated Mythos Elements


Keeper Notes