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What's the Matter with Helen?/Whoever Slew Auntie Roo? (Midnite Movies Double Feature) (1971)

Debbie Reynolds , Shelley Winters , Curtis Harrington  |  NR |  DVD
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (46 customer reviews)

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What's the Matter with Helen?/Whoever Slew Auntie Roo? (Midnite Movies Double Feature) + Trilogy of Terror (Special Edition)
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Product Details

  • Actors: Debbie Reynolds, Shelley Winters, Dennis Weaver, Micheal Mac Liammóir, Agnes Moorehead
  • Directors: Curtis Harrington
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Closed-captioned, Color, Dolby, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Fox Searchlight
  • DVD Release Date: August 27, 2002
  • Run Time: 193 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (46 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000068TPG
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #25,202 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "What's the Matter with Helen?/Whoever Slew Auntie Roo? (Midnite Movies Double Feature)" on IMDb

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Editorial Reviews


Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
45 of 45 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Shelly Winters Goes Bananas (x2)! September 11, 2004
Shelly Winters is great at playing unhinged characters. In WHAT'S THE MATTER WITH HELEN?, she teams up with Debbie Reynolds in a tale about two mothers of convicted killers who move to california in order to escape the publicity and threats against them. Helen (Winters) begins to slowly unravel, revealing the true psychotic within. Haunted by the death of her husband, she becomes increasingly dangerous to herself and others, especially Adelle (Reynolds), who may or may not survive. There are some snappy dance routines (highlighting Debbie Reynolds' talent and cuteness) scattered throughout. Watch for Dennis Weaver (Duel) as Adelle's love interest.-WHOEVER SLEW AUNTIE ROO?- has Shelly Winters as Roo, the rich widow of a famous magician. She lost her daughter Katherine in an accident and has trusted in a phony medium (Ralph Richardson) for years, paying him a small fortune so he can "contact" Katherine. Well, it's all a big scam of course, helping to push Roo over the edge. Some children from a local orphanage visit "Auntie Roo" every christmas. This year, one of the little girls resembles Roo's daughter, causing the bats in her belfry to really start a flappin'! She kidnaps the girl and her brother Christopher (Mark "Oliver" Lester), keeping them locked in her secret attic (did I mention that she keeps her mummified daughter up there too?). The rest is cat and mouse as the children try to escape Roo's insanity. In the kids' minds, they are living out "Hansel and Gretel", with Roo as the perfectly wicked witch. If you enjoy movies where Shelly Winters goes crazy, then this double feature can't be beat! Highly recommended...
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26 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Nobody does it to you like Shelley! June 23, 2002
Curtis Harrington has been one of my favorite Directors since I first saw the 1967 movie GAMES with Katherine Ross at the theater. (I was 9 years old and it scared me to death.) I also greatly admired NIGHT TIDE with Dennis Hopper while watching it on late night television in the late 60's. Then along came WHAT'S THE MATTER WITH HELEN? and WHOEVER SLEW AUNTIE ROO? in 1971. That same year I had seen a Made-for-T.V. movie titled REVENGE with Shelley Winters. Her over-the-top, intense performance in that film had such an impact on me that I couldn't wait to see WHAT'S THE MATTER WITH HELEN? When I realized that Curtis Harrington had directed the film I knew I was in for a treat. Little did I know that HELEN would become one of my favorite horror movies. Once again, Shelley did not disappoint this 13 year old who was sitting there not embarrased to be clutching his mother's arm. Harrington's deft direction and ability to create a moody atmosphere in the tradition of Grand Guignol combined with Shelley Winters' brilliant performance makes this film a 5 star effort. Then, to add icing on the cake, Harrington paired with Winters once again that year with WHOEVER SLEW AUNTIE ROO? A very clever update of the Hanzel and Gretel fairy tale. Not as scary as HELEN but just as atmospheric. This time around, Shelley secured her clawhold as Hollywood's "grande-dame" ghoul. (With orange hair to boot!) I love both of these movies and recommend them to those of you who like your "horror" mixed with a little gothic and nostalgia. Also check out THE DEVIL'S DAUGHTER made-for-T.V. 1972 with Shelley Winters and THE KILLING KIND 1973 directed by Curtis Harrington. (His most disturbing work.)
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25 of 28 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Camp classics, both of them July 9, 2004
Aaah, you just gotta love these MGM double feature discs. Regarding their DVD releases, MGM always leaves out a whole lot in terms of special features. All you usually get is a trailer and maybe a widescreen transfer, but these amazing double dipper discs resurrect films you never thought would see the light of day. "What's the Matter with Helen?" and "Whoever Slew Auntie Roo?" are excellent examples of two films that taken on their own would probably never show up on DVD. Or if they did, some seedy outfit looking to make a quick buck on a grainy, cropped release would peddle them. Yet here they are with gloriously clean transfers in all their wacky, over the top splendor. I can't say I've ever been a Shelley Winters fan, excepting her outrageously campy performance in "The Poseidon Adventure," but I must say I have a newfound respect for the aging thespian after watching these two knee slappers. What can I say? I love schlocky cinema, and "What's the Matter with Helen?" and "Whoever Slew Auntie Roo?" are prime examples of films so slathered in cheese that your cholesterol level will skyrocket within minutes of popping the disc into your player.
Of the two films, "What's the Matter with Helen" is by far the best. Shelley Winters and Debbie Reynolds play Helen Hill and Adelle Bruckner, two women who flee to California during the Depression to escape the media frenzy after their sons go to prison for murder. Fortunately, Helen knows how to play the piano and Adelle knows how to dance, so the two women open up a dance studio for the precocious offspring of Hollywood parents. Things start to go downhill when Helen begins breaking down psychologically because of her son's crimes.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Love Shelley Winters!!
These are 2 crazy movies that I remember from my youth. Enjoyed watching them so much. The quality of the DVD is perfect.
Published 3 months ago by BILLY
5.0 out of 5 stars Whoever Slew Auntie Roo?
Long time looking for this movie, it's a very good one. Allso like What's the matter with Hellen. Recomended to everyone.
Published 4 months ago by SUAREZ-DUARTE Guillermo Enrique
5.0 out of 5 stars Glad to finally own this cheesey cheesey movie
I bought this for What's the Matter with Helen but I'm just as entertained to have the Auntie Roo movie, which is just as cheesey. Read more
Published 5 months ago by Avid Reader
2.0 out of 5 stars Lame and predictable
I love old movies and I love Shelley Winters. I don't recall ever seeing or even hearing about this movie, so I rented it here on Amazon. Read more
Published 5 months ago by E.K.
4.0 out of 5 stars Old, creepy Shelley Winters movie.
I watched "Whoever Slew Auntie Roo?" when I was a young teenager.

After all these years I remembered it was "creepy," and that was all. Read more
Published 6 months ago by Mom of 6
2.0 out of 5 stars Why I liked the movie, Who Slew Auntie Roo.
I'm a Shelley Winters fan! I thought it was a good story with interesting sets and performances. Kids nowadays will probably see it as pretty tame.
Published 8 months ago by Millicent Aynes
5.0 out of 5 stars Eerie suspense
These are both great movies; entertaining and suspenseful. The film makers of the 70's did not follow rules like the movie makers of today, so the plots keep you guessing.
Published 9 months ago by Rachel Tyrell
5.0 out of 5 stars Fun Movies
The movies are kind of camp horror and fun to watch. I'm a Shelly Winters fan so I enjoyed watching her.
Published 9 months ago by mjo121
4.0 out of 5 stars What's the matter with helen?whoever slew auntie roo?
This was a requested gift for a fan of horror movies. I was told that it was a good copy and delivered quickly. I was told that My friend liked the movies.
Published 12 months ago by nancy meier
4.0 out of 5 stars A Childhood Flick
Oh my gosh, I remember seeing this as a child, and while I wasn't exactly scared, I do remember thinking Shelly Winters was creepy. This is a cult classic and holds up over time. Read more
Published 13 months ago by Lavinia
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