31 Days of Halloween with
The Kelly Society
Imagine sleeping in an 18th Century mansion set upon a high cliff in the English countryside, only to awaken just before dawn to the sound of a woman whose wailing sobs come from “Everywhere and nowhere.”
Welcome back everyone! This is Vivien Kelly, co-founder of The Kelly Society paranormal cleansing team here in Half Moon Bay, CA. We are here for all of your paranormal cleansing needs in the Bay Area.
Enough advertisement! I’m so excited to kick off this Halloween Season, even if we are in quarantine. For instance, you can eat Halloween candy on the couch and watch a spooky movie!
My highest recommendation is the 1944 black and white classic The Uninvited, starring Ray Milland and Gail Russell. The photo above is from the French poster for the film, which I found gorgeous. The subtitle La Falaise Mysterieuse means The Mysterious Cliff.
The Uninvited is a film I grew up on. My parents loved it, and every Halloween season our entire family watched the movie.
The basic synopsis is this: It is 1944. A sister, Pamela Fitzgerald and her brother, Roderick Fitzgerald take a holiday from London to the English countryside and happen upon an abandoned 18th Century mansion. They fall in love with the house and buy it the same day from a retired naval commander. Since the commander’s daughter died from a fall off the cliff just beyond the house, he is happy to be rid of it. However, when the Fitzgeralds settle in they become the unwitting participants in a battle with two ghosts. Until they can solve the mystery surrounding Stella, the commander’s granddaughter, they are all in danger.
Dorothy Macardle is the author of the book which was adapted by Frank Partos and Dodie Smith into the screenplay for the film. After writing such a compelling and romantic novel, of course Hollywood came calling, and I’m so glad they did!
Dorothy Macardle—historian, playwright, journalist, and novelist—was born in Dundalk, Co. Louth. She was educated at Alexandra College in Dublin where she later lectured in English literature. She is best remembered for her seminal treatise on Ireland’s struggle for independence, The Irish Republic (1937), but also wrote novels of the uncanny, including The Uninvited (1941), The Unforeseen (1946), and Dark Enchantment (1953). She died in Drogheda and is buried in St. Fintan’s Cemetery, Sutton.
“They call them the haunted shores, these stretches of Devonshire and Cornwall and Ireland which rear up against the westward ocean. Mists gather here… and sea fog… and eerie stories…”
Ray Milland as Roderick Fitzgerald in The Uninvited (opening voice over)
A popular song even came from this movie that some of you may know, Stella by Starlight, by Richard Hayman. It became so successful it was recorded by Ella Fitzgerald in 1961. In the film, Roderick Fitzgerald is a composer and writes the song for Stella Meredith while courting her.
If you like to lend an ear, here it is on Utube:
I’ve also made a montage of movie stills from The Uninvited, and from them you can gather the essence of the story. It is heartwarming, frightening, spooky, romantic, and humorous all at the same time! But, most of all it is a hauntingly emotional story of a young woman discovering where she came from and ultimately, who she truly is.
After my sisters and I watched the film, we would have the dreaded walk down the hallway to our bedrooms. Of course we were scared, but the worst part was when our father would say “Beware of Mary Meredith!” Mary Meredith is the name of one of the dead characters in the movie who haunts the terrified living. She is very wicked in the story, so when dad said that, we all shook to the core. Also, there was a full length mirror at the end of our dimly lit hall which would reflect our images as we walked down the carpeted corridor. Even though we knew it was just our own reflections, we all saw Mary Meredith about to attack! We ran screaming into our beds every time!
Happy Halloween Season!
The Kelly Society
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