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Back from the Dead

Back from the Dead(1957)

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Remind Me

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Katy Hazelton accompanies her pregnant sister Miranda "Mandy" Anthony and Mandy's new husband, Dick Anthony, on what is supposed to be a peaceful vacation in the sea-swept countryside. Soon after they arrive, however, Mandy is haunted by a woman's voice. When Mandy tells Katy that she thinks someone is trying to "get at her," Katy becomes concerned. One night, Dick plays a recording of an eerie, moody musical composition, sending Mandy into convulsions that cause a miscarriage. The doctor diagnoses that Mandy has suffered an epileptic seizure, but when she awakens from her trance, Mandy spurns Katy and asserts that she is Felicia, Dick's late wife. Disturbed, Dick leaves Mandy's room and tells Katy that he never told Mandy about his previous marriage and therefore she could not have known about Felicia. He continues that the piece of music he played was Felicia's favorite, and that he had felt strangely compelled to return to the seaside house, the same house in which Felicia died six years earlier. In town, Mandy, who is now possessed by Felicia, and Dick meet architect John Mitchell, an old friend whom Dick invites to stop by. When Mandy asks to visit the Bradleys, Felicia's parents, Dick becomes alarmed. At the Bradley house, Mandy announces that she is Felicia and has come back to them. Mrs. Bradley is at first skeptical until Mandy recounts intimate details of her life as Felicia. When Dick confides to Katy that he believes Felicia has taken possession of Mandy's body with the help of Mrs. Bradley, a dabbler in the black arts, Katy replies that they must fight for Mandy. After Dick takes Mandy home, Mr. Bradley, a sickly old man, warns his wife that God will punish her. That night, John and neighbor Molly Prentice come to visit the Anthonys and are amazed when Mandy enters the room wearing one of Felicia's seductive dresses and her faithful dog Copper growls at her. After everyone has gone to bed, Mandy sneaks into the slumbering Katy's room, turns on the gas in the fireplace and shuts the window. Soon after, Katy is awakened, gasping for air, by the sound of Mandy's disembodied voice. The following day, John invites Katy to see his house. While they are seated on the terrace, John's neighbor, Nancy Cordell, drops by and remarks that she and the Bradleys are members of an occult group led by a man named Maitre Victor Renall. Recalling that Mandy, as Felicia, mentioned Renall's name, Katy feigns an interest in joining his cult, and Nancy offers to introduce her to Renall the following day. When Katy appeals to Renall to help bring back her sister, he agrees on the condition that she become his unquestioning disciple. After Katy leaves, Nancy, who is in love with Renall, hears Renall swear that he will never let Felicia go again. Later, Mr. Bradley phones Katy to warn her that she is in grave danger and must oppose the evil menace of Renall with courage and faith. Perceiving that Katy presents a threat to Felicia's existence, Mrs. Bradley casts a spell on her, causing Katy intense pain, but Katy summons her courage and breaks the spell. John, who has witnessed the incident, then confides to Katy that he was the last person to see Felicia on the night of her death: At a party at the Cordells', Felicia humiliated her husband by flirting with all the men and then hid in the back seat of John's car. When John discovered her there, he chastised her for her behavior. Threatening suicide, Felicia climbed out of the car and walked to the edge of the cliffs, where she lost her footing and fell backwards to her death. After confessing his part in Felicia's death, John leaves, and later that night, the Bradleys' maid Agnes phones the Anthony residence in a panic. Katy, Dick and Mandy rush to the Bradley house, where Agnes recounts a terrifying battle between the Bradleys that left Mr. Bradley dead and Mrs. Bradley unconscious. When Mandy insists on turning to Renall for help, Dick locks her in her room, but she tricks Katy and escapes. After Mandy arrives at Renall's, a jealous Nancy forbids him to take her back, prompting Renall to rebuff Nancy and order her to leave. Mandy, acknowledging that she is growing weak, pleads for Renall's help, and together they scheme to kidnap Molly and use her blood to revive Mandy. After informing Dick of Renall's plans, Nancy leads him, Katy and John to the Renall house, where they find Renall, robed in black and bent over the helpless Molly. After a rejected Nancy shoots Renall, Mandy grabs a knife and is about to stab herself when John and Dick restrain her and she then collapses. Some time later, Mandy awakens, restored to her body, believing that the whole incident has been a terrible dream.