The Shuttered Room

The Shuttered Room [a.k.a. Blood Island] is a 1967 British horror film directed by David Greene and starring Gig Young and Carol Lynley as a couple who move into a house with dark secrets. It is based on a short story of the same name by August Derleth which Derleth published as a so-called 'posthumous collaboration with H. P. Lovecraft. The film has also been re-released under the title Blood Island.[1][2]

The Shuttered Room
Theatrical release poster
Directed byDavid Greene
Produced byPhilip Hazelton (as Phillip Hazleton)
Written byD. B. Ledrov
Nathaniel Tanchuck
StarringGig Young
Carol Lynley
Music byBasil Kirchin
CinematographyKenneth Hodges
Edited byBrian Smedley-Aston
Troy-Schenck Productions
Distributed byWarner Bros.-Seven Arts
Release date
  • 27 June 1967 (1967-06-27)
Running time
99-100 minutes
CountryUnited Kingdom

Although set in the U.S., the film was shot in Kent and Norfolk, England.[3] The film features a large, half-brick, half-timber watermill, which is destroyed by fire in the closing scenes. The building used was Hardingham Mill on the River Yare in Norfolk.[4] [5]


Susannah Kelton, a newly married twentysomething who was raised in foster care in the big city, learns that her real parents have died and left their property to her. She and her husband, Mike, travel to the island of Dunwich off the coast of Massachusetts to inspect the property. They find a local culture that is clannish, backward, and ignorant. The few friends they make amongst the locals, including Susannah's Aunt Agatha, warn them that the family mill is cursed and urge the Keltons to leave immediately and never look back.

Refusing to bow to superstition, the couple consider rebuilding the abandoned mill. They become the target of a gang of local thugs led by Susannah's lecherous cousin, Ethan. Their reign of terror is ended by something still living in the shuttered attic room of the mill, something that caused Susannah to have nightmares as a child.



The script was originally written by Alexander Jacobs and Nathaniel Tanchuck. Filming began in April 1966.[6] Sam Peckinpah's Straw Dogs (1970) would have many similarities.


  1. Mitchell, Charles P. (2001). The Complete H.P. Lovecraft Filmography. Westport: Greenwood Press. p. 185. ISBN 9780313316418.
  2. Smith, Don G. (2006). H.P. Lovecraft in Popular Culture: The Works and Their Adaptations in Film, Television, Comics, Music and Games. Jefferson: McFarland & Co. p. 51. ISBN 9780786420919.
  3. Vallance, Tom (11 April 2003). "David Greene". The Independent. London. p. 20.
  4. "Take a walk on location in the steps of the stars". Eastern Daily Press. Norwich. 7 June 2012.
  6. Schaffner to Direct 'Spy' Martin, Betty. Los Angeles Times (1923-Current File) [Los Angeles, Calif.] 14 March 1966: c19.
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