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Borley Rectory

  • Documentary and factual
  • News and current affairs
  • 2017
  • Ashley Thorpe
  • 73 mins
  • 12

Summary

Animated documentary chronicling what came to be known as the most haunted house in England. The legends attached to the rectory at Borley, and famed paranormal investigator Harry Price's subsequent investigations of them, caught the public's imagination during the late 1920s, in time becoming one of the world's most notorious ghost stories

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Review

A star rating of 3 out of 5.

Placing its cast in digitally faked vintage film footage, this drama-documentary explores what was once dubbed "the most haunted house in England". The Victorian gothic rectory, built just outside Borley in Essex, had long had a local reputation for ghostly sightings, but its spooky reputation spread nationally after newspaper reports and investigative efforts from the 1920s onwards. In essence, it's the real-life inspiration for a whole swathe of horror cinema, and writer/director/animator Ashley Thorpe's fact-based approach is to conjure up the flickering black-and-white footage that might have existed had there been movie cameras to capture the spectral goings-on. Expanded from an intended short film thanks to crowdfunding, this is a genuine labour of love, with every frame packing in obsessive period detail, achieving the distressed quality of aged celluloid, and deploying animated effects for the ghostly visitations. British horror fans will appreciate the presence of Reece Shearsmith and Jonathan Rigby as a tabloid reporter and psychic investigator respectively, and while the overall effect - dominated by Julian Sands's characterful narration - is dramatically rather dry, the charmingly bespoke nature of the enterprise casts its own unsettling spell.

How to watch

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Credits

Cast

rolename
Harry PriceJonathan Rigby
VC WallReece Shearsmith
Marianne FoysterAnnabel Bates
Rev Guy SmithNicholas Vince
Mabel SmithClaire Louise Amias
Rev Lionel FoysterSteve Furst
Rev Harry BullRichard Strange
Ethel BullSara Dee
Mabel BullStephanie Walls
Helen GlanvilleVirge Gilchrist
NarratorJulian Sands

Crew

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DirectorAshley Thorpe

Details

Released on
2017-11-10
Languages
English
Guidance
Sexual references.
Formats
Black and white
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