Rifftrax: House on Haunted Hill – DVD Review

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The old theme song to Mystery Science Theater 3000 said that theyd “watch cheesy movies / the worst we can find / La! La! La!” Well, thanks to Rifftrax, they no longer have to limit themselves to only the bad ones.

Now, personally, I think House on Haunted Hill is certainly cheesy, but stacked against such MST3K classics like Manos: The Hands of Fate or Red Zone Cuba, its practically Oliviers Hamlet. But that doesnt mean that it cant be made fun of, and honestly there are no people better suited for the job than the performers/writers/producers of Mystery Science Theater 3000: Mike Nelson, Kevin Murphy, and Bill Corbett.

For those of you who dont know, Rifftrax is their latest venture. Its a site where people can download commentary tracks made by Nelson, Murphy, and Corbett for just about every movie imaginable from Star Wars to Casablanca. You simply download the track to your mp3 player then sync it up to the movie. House on Haunted Hill is part of a new DVD campaign of theirs where they release the movie with the commentary track already added. You can either watch the movie with commentary, or without. In addition to the movie, each DVD contains a coupon code to download the Rifftrax for Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, which Im actually downloading as I write this.

Honestly, at only $9.95 this is absolutely worth the money. The guys are at the top of their game and its great to hear them at it again.


The movie was presented in Full Fram 1.33:1 format with the audio in 2.0 stereo. There were no problems with either the audio or the video.


There were no extras for this feature.


Im a huge fan of MST3K, and while I havent really bought any Rifftrax yet, this DVD has certainly convinced me to start. I rather prefer what they are doing now with releasing the DVD with the commentary track so you dont have to go through the whole rigmarole of downloading and syncing and all that jazz (Im lazy—sue me), I enjoyed House on Haunted Hill just as much as any MST3K episode. Highly recommended.

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Legend Films presents Rifftrax: House on Haunted Hill. Directed by William Castle. Starring Vincent Price, Carol Ohmart, Richard Long, Elisha Cook with commentary by Mike Nelson, Kevin Murphy, and Bill Corbett. Running time: 75 minutes. Rated NR. Released on DVD: June 16, 2009. Available at Amazon.

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