The Haunting of Morella (1990) Movie Script

And the ghostly winds whispered
but one sound upon my tortured ears.../i
Morella... evermore
Edgar Allan Poe
Morella Locke! You have been found guilty of
witchcraft, blasphemy and murder.
Therefore it is the judgement to this club union
to be sentenced to death...
as proscribed by law.
Do you have anything to say before this assembly?
Gideon Locke!
Yes, my husband, I speak to you!
Mark well our daughter, I shall
live on within her!
One day she and I will
live as one!
To welcome you to the
gates of hell!
Look into her eyes!
She has the power to control men's minds.
This is barbaric! No one has been executed
for witchcraft in the county for 40 years!
She has lived as a witch! And she
shall die as a witch!
Now shall her eyes be put out.
So even after her death she may cast no more evil spells.
She shall stay there for
a fortnight.
A warning to all who will
follow in her wicked ways!
Come, Gideon.
No. Do not torment yourself
further, my friend.
I will take care of interring
her remains.
No. I shall build a tomb on
the very spot where she died.
May Morella live in peace.
For eternity.
Edgar Allan Poe's
The Haunting of Morella
Seventeen years later
- Yes Sir?
- I have an appointment with Gideon Locke.
Yes, you're expected.
If you follow me please, Mr Chapman.
Forgive me Sir, I...
...sometimes forget my appearance.
It's an honour fo finally
meet you, Sir!
Your message stated that you have
an important transaction with me?
Actually, Sir, this concerns
your daughter Lenora.
I see.
As you probably know, a trust fund was
set up by your late wife's family -
- prior to the birth of your daughter.
According to the specifications set down,
Lenora is to come into that inheritance
on her 18th birthday.
I understand the event will
take place in three days.
Yes, on the 24th.
I have some papers that require
her signature at that time.
I'd like Lenora to look them
over beforehand.
May I ask your age, Mr Chapman?
My age? 27.
Now, if I may see Lenora?
I'm sorry, I absolutely
forbid it.
- But Sir, I...
- Young man, you will leave this
house immediately!
All further transactions will
be conducted by letter.
Is that understood?
Sir, if I have offended you
in any way...
- Quintis!
- Yes?
This young man is leaving now.
You will see him out.
Yes, Sir.
I have left the papers requiring
Lenora's signature on the table.
Good day, Sir!
The portrait!
No, Sir. Mr Locke's late wife.
He's a handsome young man!
I wonder what he wanted?
You can daydream about him later.
Come. Let us get back to our
lessons on Spain.
Uh, geography.
What's the point of learning about the world
when I'm never allowed to leave these grounds?
Some day you may travel and see
all the places we read about.
Some day? Not if father
has any say in things!
If you make faces like that, no
young man will ever come to call!
I was saving this for your birthday.
But you can have it now for a smile!
For me! What is it?
You'll have to open it to find out.
It's beautiful!
Thank you, Miss Deveraux!
How does it look?
King's knight takes bishop.
I must confess, Gideon, your powers of
concentration never cease to amaze me!
- It's as if you could still see!
- Yes, it is my curse!
- Your laudeanum, Mr Locke!
- Laudeanum?
Yes, Mr Locke's having
difficulties sleeping.
I see.
Now, if you have no further need for
me tonight I'll be in my room, Mr Locke.
- Good night.
- Doctor.
Time for all proper young ladies
to be in their beds. Lenora?
Can't I practice a little longer?
You've practiced enough for one evening. Say goodnight
to your father and doctor Gault.
Good night, father. I hope you enjoyed my
playing, it was a piece I composed
especially for you!
It was beautiful!
Good night, my dear.
- Dr Gault.
- Sleep well, Lenora.
- By your leave.
- Miss Deveraux.
I must say, Miss Deveraux has
become an accomplished woman.
Yes, she's more than a governess
to Lenora.
Over the years I have grown
quite dependent upon her.
In some strange ways she
reminds me of...
After all these years I still can not
bring myself to utter that name.
June 14.
While visiting Northampton I have encountered
the most extraordinary woman.
Her name is Morella Winthrop.
I know nothing of her
family or background.
Yet I feel an immediate rapport with her.
November 21.
My new bride Morella has recently become fascinated
with certain mystical writings-
-centering on life after death.
Indeed she has a developed a morbid preoccupation with death.
Possibly due to her own increasing ill health.
I can not look into her eyes without
the sensation of plummeting into some
dreary and unfathomable abyss.
September 24. Morella has
almost died during childbirth.
Our newborn daughter Lenora appears
healthy in all respects and has the same
dark eyes as her mother.
Dr Gault has confided to me that Morella
may only have a few months more to live.
While I was away on business Morella plunged
into her occult studies with a renewed passion.
Accompanied by some unknown disciple,
she deciphered a ritual she believed will
grant immortality.
The first step necessitated the slaughter
of a serving girl from our household.
Morella bled her in order to
bathe in virgin blood.
Thus was she prepared to invoke
the powers of darkness.
The final act of this ghastly
initiation took place at a graveyard.
Fortunately I arrived home sooner than
expected and discovered the slain
body of the serving girl.
With several townspeople I
set out to find Morella.
We arrived moments before she
could conclude the horrible ceremony.
Justice was swift and severe.
May God have mercy on us all!
I didn't hear you come in.
In this household one
learns to walk quietly!
Mmm, it feels good!
You've had a tiring day.
Perhaps some wine?
No, not now.
What's wrong?
Nothing's wrong. I just prefer
to be alone tonight, that's all.
You know I have to prepare
Lenora's lessons for the week.
I understand.
And tomorrow night?
There's not a living soul I'd rather
spend the evening with than you!
Arise, my love!
Arise from your slumber, my love!
The autumnal equinox is here. And a
fresh young body awaits you.
Now Morella...
...come forth!
Come forth!
Miss Deveraux?
Come to me, Lenora!
What are you doing up at this hour?
Father, what happened?
How did I get here?
What do you mean?
You don't remember?
Well, I was dreaming, and I heard
somebody calling my name from far away!
I followed the voice...
It was her.
Was I walking in my sleep?
Yes, yes, that must be it.
I guess I was just upset
from reading your diary.
My diary? Where did
you find my diary?
- In my room where you left it!
- I did no such thing!
Someone in this house
must have taken it.
Why didn't you tell
me about her before?
- I would have understood!
- The hour is late.
We will discuss it in the morning.
- What are these?
- Legal documents concerning your inheritance.
A lawyer brought them for
your signature.
Perhaps I can visit the village and
have him explain this to me?
That won't be necessary. Dr Gault read them
to me and they are completly in order.
Father, I am almost 18 years old. Don't you think
it is time I started making decisions for myself?
Lenora, you must realize by now
why we never visit the village.
There is still great resentment
there towards our family.
Because of mother? That
was 17 years ago!
You will do as you are told!
Besides, we have everything
we need here.
Well, maybe you have.
In two days I will be financially independent.
I can travel whereever I want then.
- How dare you speak to me that way?
- Well, maybe it's time I started!
Mr Chapman?
Yes? How can I help you?
I'm Coel Deveraux and employed as
governess in the Locke household.
Pleasure to meet, you, Miss Deveraux.
Please be seated.
I understand you drew up the documents
involving Lenora Locke's inheritance?
Actually, my father did.
Then Lenora has a number of questions. Some
of the legal terms are rather complicated.
You may tell Miss Locke I'm
available at her convenience.
Then Lenora would like you
to call on her this afternoon.
I'm afraid Mr Locke made it quite clear
my visits were not welcome.
Mr Chapman, you must understand Gideon Locke
has not been a rational man...
...since the tragic death of his wife.
He still treats Lenora as if she were a child.
Lenora suggests a meeting away
from the mansion grounds.
I see. Where would such
a meeting take place?
I'll be giving Lenora her lessons near the lake.
At the northeast edge of our property.
You may find us there this afternoon.
Now I must go.
Until this afternoon, Mr Chapman.
Mr Chapman! I'm pleased
that you could join us.
Allow me to introduce
Miss Lenora Locke.
- It's a pleasure to meet you, Miss Locke.
- Thank you!
I think we have studied enough Latin for one day.
I know you and Mr Chapman have much to talk about.
It's a beautiful day. You two should
take a walk while you discuss your legal matters.
There's a lovely path that
winds along the brook there.
You won't be coming with us?
No thank you. I'll just stay
here if you don't mind.
- Would you care to go for a walk, Miss Locke?
- I'd love to.
So you see, the summation of all that legal
wording is that you become a rather well-to-do
young lady, Miss Locke.
Have you made any immediate plans?
- Yes, I'd love to travel.
I'd like to actually visit the
places I've only read about.
I'd love to see the world myself some day. I've only
gone as far as Cambridge and that was to study.
- Did you get to visit Boston?
- Not very often.
I spent most of my time buried in law books. See,
I've lived a rather sheltered life myself.
At least you live in town!
Tell me, what is it like?
Somehow, it seems smaller than when I was young.
Maybe it's just that I've gotten taller.
Other than that, things are
pretty much the same.
- Are there many people my age?
- Yes, quite a few!
- What about the young ladies? Are they pretty?
- Some are.
None as lovely as you.
We've wandered off the estate. I've
never been this far before!
Don't worry, I know where we are.
This is the old cemetary.
The servants used to tell
ghost stories about this place.
I came here when I was 10 years old. I got
so scared, I ran all the way back home!
Somehow it doesn't frighten me. Just
seems lonely and neglected.
I should get you back
to Miss Deveraux.
I can't tell you what it's like
not having somebody like you to talk to.
- I wish this day could go on forever!
- It never end.
Forgive me! I don't know what came over me.
You needn't aplogize, Lenora.
Come, I'll take you back.
No, I'll find my way. Besides, I'd like
to be here alone for a while.
You'll be alright?
I'll be fine.
- May I call on you again tomorrow?
- By the lake.
By the lake, Miss Locke.
Don't look away, Lenora!
See what your father and
others have done to her?
Let me go, I wanna leave here!
She gave you life. And now you
will share your life with her!
Can't you feel it, Lenora? Her blood in
your veins, her soul in your body!
- Her thoughts in your mind!
- I don't know what your talking
about, let me go!
Look at her, Lenora! Look into
those dark empty eyes.
Welcome back, Morella!
How long has it been?
17 years.
- And this is Lenora's body?
- Yes.
I can feel her. She struggles
within me.
Do not worry. Lenora's
will is weak.
Eventually you shall
be in full control.
You have done very well, my love.
Your reward is long overdue.
Yes, as you promised, we shall perform
the rites of immortality together.
And I shall serve you for eternity!
I fear that we have underestimated
her. Lenora is strong!
I shall not be able to hold on
to her much longer.
Will you be able to return?
In minute periods. But I can
not remain within her.
We must find a permanent dwelling
place for my spirit.
My remains.
You must resurrect them!
Miss Deveraux?
Lie still, Lenora.
You need to rest.
What happened?
I found you by the entrace to the old cemetary.
Apparently you had a fainting spell.
Don't you remember?
I suppose the shock of seeing your
mother's resting place caused you
to lose consciousness.
Now you're tired.
Everything will be better in the morning.
You're not leaving?
You need your sleep.
And I have many more
things to attend to.
Pleasant dreams, Lenora!
I love you so much, Ilsa!
Mother told me never to believe what
a man says with his pants off!
But it's true! I'll prove it!
Miles, you devil! We have the rest of our
lives for such things! After we're married.
I can't afford to take a wife until
I finish my apprenticeship, you know that.
This is difficult for me too, Miles.
But it's late and I have to return to
my quarters before I'm missed.
You won't have to work as a
servant girl for long.
- Here again tomorrow?
- Yes.
Now I must go.
Good night, my love!
Is someone there?
Help me!
Where are you?
In here.
Miss Deveraux, why ...
I still live!
Good day, Mr Chapman.
Dr Gault. I hear the Ashtons
had a blessed event.
Yes, twins. Unfortunately my
fee is not doubled in such cases.
- Are you locking up early?
- Yes.
When a young man whose enterprising closes
his business at this hour there can be
only one of two reasons.
- He's either ill or he's in love.
- I've never felt better in my life.
Guy, I have known Lenora
Locke all of her life.
I have known Gideon for most of mine.
They are both fine people.
But there is something
unhealthy in that house.
Do use caution, my boy.
I'm afraid this is one time I won't
follow my physician's advice.
- Good day, Dr Gault.
- Good day to you, you young rogue!
Lenora, is something wrong?
I'm not sure.
Have you ever said or done something and
then you felt as if it weren't you doing it?
- I don't understand.
- No, neither do I.
Last night I discovered
my mother's crypt.
And then it was like somebody else
was speaking and acting for me.
I don't remember everything that happened.
It was almost like a dream.
Maybe that's all it was?
Now, that's what Miss Deveraux said.
Yet I still can't help but feeling -
- that there's someone inside of me.
- Someone waiting for me to let go!
- Lenora, you've had a bad dream.
You're upset by it, there's nothing
uncommon about that!
You're right.
See Guy, I just don't want to
believe that I'm ...
Come on, I know of a place!
- Who lives here?
- No one. It's been deserted for years.
Someone's been here recently. I'd say this
has become quite a popular meeting place.
Well, it used to be the quarters of our caretaker.
I remember he was terribly young and handsome.
Then father let him go.
I never understood why.
I'll see if I can start a fire.
- Guy!
- Yes?
I hope you weren't paying much
attention to what I said earlier.
About the caretaker?
No. All that nonsense about
another person.
- Sometimes my imagination gets carried away.
- That's not uncommon.
Sometimes I imagine what it would feel like
having your hands touching my body.
Lenora, perhaps we ...
I wanna feel what it's like
having you inside me.
Excuse me, Sir.
- Miles Archer wishes to speak with you.
- I know no one of that name?
A young blacksmith from the village.
He's very insistent.
Very well.
- Mr Locke?
- I am Gideon Locke. How may I help you?
Well, this concerns a young woman
on your household staff, Sir.
What is it, you wish to marry her?
Well, yes Sir, but you misunderstand me.
I am concerned about her whereabouts.
Word has reached me that she
did not return here last night.
You say she's employed
in my household?
Yes, Sir, her name is Ilsa Carrell.
She's your servant girl.
May I have your permission to search
the grounds? She might be hurt somewhere.
I ...
I beg your pardon, Sir.
I, I sometimes fall into reveries. Yes,
yes of course you may search.
Thank you. Sorry to disturb you.
Good day.
I understood you were giving Miss
Lenora her lessons today?
Yes. Who was that that just
left, Quintis?
A young man from the village. I contacted
him when Ilsa didn't return to her quarters
last night.
Servant girls have run away before.
Yes, usually with their young men. She didn't
happen to mention anything about going anywhere?
Why, no. The last time I spoke with
her she didn't say a word.
What are you doing in my room?
I followed you to the old graveyard.
A few minutes later I saw Ilsa arrive.
What were you two doing there together?
I don't like your questions, Diane.
And I especially don't
like being followed by anyone.
I need to talk to you.
Not here.
At the lake, at half past 10.
I'll be there.
Yes, father dear?
Where have you been?
It's very late.
And how does a blind man tell the time?
By the chimes of the clock, you know that.
I also know that you're a helpless man.
Living in constant fear.
- Lenora, you must understand ...
- Were you afraid that I'd become like her?
Her madness, as you call it,
began when she married.
Were you afraid that I'd be the
same as I became a woman?
I did what I could to protect you.
You were afraid that she
and I would be as one.
My God!
That voice ...
You sought to be rid of me but
I shall live within her.
Sleep well, Gideon.
Yes, Miss Lenora?
Quintin, get me out of here!
Quintin, help me!
No, don't go, help me!
Get out!
Lenora Locke! You have been found guilty
of witchcraft and blasphemy!
For these and other crimes you are
hereby sentenced to death.
- As proscribed by law.
- No!
Forgive me, I sometimes
forget my appearance.
Lenora, darling! I was saving this for your
birthday. But you can have it now for a smile.
What is it?
You'll have to open it to find out.
- Welcome to hell!
- No!
No. No.
Ilsa, wait!
Come here!
One more feeding, my love,
and you'll be fully resurrected!
Quintis indicated that it
was urgent that I see you.
I understand Miss Deveraux arranged a
meeting between yourself and Lenora?
- Sir, I asure you ...
- You need not deny it for her sake, young man.
I may be blind, but
others see for me.
Very well, Sir. I wish to ask for
the hand of your daughter in marriage.
Very honourable.
Then you would be agreeable to taking her
out of this place immediately?
- Yes, but a few days ago ...
- A few days ago I was concerned for her mind.
Now I am concerned for her soul.
I'm sorry, I don't understand.
Morella was the most beautiful, the most
fascinating creature I had ever known.
After we were married,
madness came.
Household staff vanished
for no apparent reason.
Eventually I discovered that she had
been performing human sacrifices.
There was a trial.
- And she was executed for witchcraft.
- I've heard stories when I was young.
Before she died she swor she would
return. And in the body of Lenora.
For 17 years I have lived in
dread of that prophecy.
Now it has come to pass.
- But you don't seriously believe ...
- That Morella could rise from the dead?
Last night Lenora spoke with me here in this room.
But it was Morella's words that came from those lips.
Call me mad if you will. But my wife has
returned to take possession of my daughter.
- Where is Lenora now?
- She left the house this morning and has not returned.
Quintis is out looking for her but the
estate is large. She could be anywhere.
- I'll find her.
- Yes.
Yes, there is still a chance she could respond to you.
Take her to the village. Find
Reverend Ward and Dr Gault.
There may still be a way
of exercising Morella's spirit!
- I'll speak to Dr Gault personally.
- Thank you.
You're the only person I can call upon.
Miss Deveraux and nurse
Summers have both disappeared.
Just like those poor
others 17 years ago!
- Lenora, are you alright?
- Is something wrong? Tell me!
This is difficult to say. I suspect
your father may be mentally deranged.
- No, he's sometimes ...
- Lenora, he's raving about exorcism -
- and your mother coming back from the dead.
I'm going to get Dr Gault.
- Well, then I should be with him!
- No, I believe you'll be safer away from the house.
At least until the doctor completes his examination.
Alright. But let me find Miss Deveraux
first. We'll be waiting for you when you
return from the village.
By the old cemetary. It's on the way.
Now, there's every indication
that this is indeed Ilsa Carrell.
Or what's left of her.
A servant girl reported missing.
Who could have done such a thing?
I don't know.
It's this incision along
the jugular vein that worries me.
I have only seen one other case like this.
I was about to say that was 17 years ago.
Morella Locke used exactly that
procedure in one of her rituals.
Doctor, you know Gideon Locke
rather well, don't you?
As well as anyone, I imagine.
Has he shown any signs recently
of mental deterioration?
Gideon has been suffering from deep
depression ever since his wife died.
But if you're questioning his sanity.
No, I wager he's as sane as you or I.
Possibly could you go out to the Locke estate?
- Yes, but I don't understand?
- There's no time to explain.
If you care for your friend then hurry!
But, Guy ...
I'll get the carriage.
Miss Deveraux?
Yes, I'm coming.
Come, Lenora!
Lenora, my child.
You have grown up rather beautiful.
Or do I flatter myself?
No. You're dead!
A temporary inconvenience!
After one more feeding I
shall become completely resurrected.
I believe that honour shall
be bestowed upon your father.
Lenora! Lenora!
- Gault, how did you know?
- Gideon.
He thought Morella would draw you here.
What do you want from me?
It's what I want to give you. Immortality!
Mankind's eternal dream!
Imagine, centuries shall pass.
And all mortals will live and
die. But we shall exist forever.
No, you once tried to kill me!
Poor Gideon thought a sacrifice
was only your initiation.
Tonight you and I shall
complete those rites together.
No, I don't want to be like you!
Lenora! You are mine!
Yes, yes, you are mine!
- Lenora!
- Morella!
I'm the one you want!
Gideon, my beloved. The one whom I swore
to honour and obey, til death do us part.
I knew Lenora would bring you to me.
Then you no longer control her?
For the moment. Rest assured
she shall be mine forever.
Lenora, leave this place.
Prepare yourself, Gideon!
You've become old. There was
a time when you were handsome.
And there was a time when
your soul was so beautiful.
Both have passed.
Then come my husband. Let our
bodies enfold in one final embrace.
My flesh needs sustenance.
And your life shall fill that need.
Yes, we shall be together always, my love.
Father, no!
No, father!
Let me go, let me go!
- Don't look!
- No, I need to see.
- I need to remember.
- May they both find peace at last.
I still live!