Scream of Fear / Taste of Fear (1961)

Scream of Fear / Taste of Fear (1961)

“You say my mind is affecting my legs. You’re wrong: it’s my legs that are affecting my mind.”

Wheelchair-bound Penny (Susan Strasberg) returns to her wealthy father’s house for the first time in ten years, only to be told by his new wife Jane (Ann Todd) that he has gone away suddenly on a business trip. When she starts to see her father’s corpse appearing around the property, Penny believes she’s going crazy, and enlists the help of a hunky chauffeur (Ronald Lewis) to help her solve the mystery.


  • Christopher Lee Films
  • Disabilities
  • Gaslighting
  • Horror
  • Susan Strasberg Films

Response to Peary’s Review:
Susan Strasberg is mesmerizing in this heart-stopping Hammer Studios flick, reminiscent of both So Long at the Fair (1950) and My Name is Julia Ross (1945) in its depiction of a young woman made to doubt her own sanity. While the script is “full of holes” (wouldn’t Penny have met Jane at least once before?), the true identity of the villain(s) remains a secret to the end, and there are “several times when you are guaranteed to jump.” As Peary notes, this film remains “lots of fun for terror-movie fans.”

Redeeming Qualities:

  • Susan Strasberg’s impressive performance as wheelchair-bound Penny
  • Some genuinely freaky shots of a corpse
  • Several exciting plot twists

Must See?
No, but it’s highly recommended.


2 thoughts on “Scream of Fear / Taste of Fear (1961)

  1. Very much in agreement here. Not a must but very creepy and Strasberg turns in an interesting performance. I caught it on one of the STARZ channels not too long ago so it may get occasional play there. This is an instance in which a title’s inclusion in Peary’s book leads to discovery of something that might otherwise be overlooked.

  2. ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

    One of Hammer’s best thrillers and clearly based by writer Jimmy Sangster on Les Diaboliques (1954) and about as good as that earlier film.

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