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The Sentinel (1977)

Not ready for marriage, a fashion model moves into an unbelievably cheap Brooklyn Heights apartment, where weird occurrences turn into a much more frightening turn of events.

Director:

Michael Winner

Writers:

Jeffrey Konvitz (novel), Michael Winner (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
Reviews
4 nominations. See more awards »

Photos

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Chris Sarandon ... Michael Lerman
Cristina Raines ... Alison Parker
Martin Balsam ... Professor Ruzinsky
John Carradine ... Father Halliran
José Ferrer ... Robed Figure
Ava Gardner ... Miss Logan
Arthur Kennedy ... Monsignor Franchino
Burgess Meredith ... Charles Chazen
Sylvia Miles ... Gerde Engstrom
Deborah Raffin ... Jennifer
Eli Wallach ... Detective Gatz
Christopher Walken ... Detective Rizzo
Jerry Orbach ... Michael Dayton
Beverly D'Angelo ... Sandra
Hank Garrett ... James Brenner
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Storyline

A fashion model moves into a house inhabited (on the top floor) by a blind priest. She begins having strange physical problems, has trouble sleeping at night, and has some nasty flashbacks of her attempted suicide. She complains to the real estate agent of the noise caused by her strange neighbors, but finds out that the house is only occupied by the priest and herself, and ultimately discovers that she has been put in the house for a reason. Written by Ed Sutton <esutton@mindspring.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

There Must Forever Be A Guardian At The Gate From Hell... See more »

Genres:

Horror

Certificate:

18 | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Italian | Latin

Release Date:

21 April 1977 (Netherlands) See more »

Also Known As:

De wachter See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$3,700,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$4,000,000, 31 December 1977
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Kate Jackson was asked to play Alison Parker, but turned down the part. See more »

Goofs

(at around 36 mins) While Allison and the landlady are having coffee, the coffee cup is in the landlady's hand, then when the camera changes angles it's on the table, then back in her hand when the camera angle goes back. See more »

Quotes

Michael Lerman: Look at this. William O'Rourke. Father Halliran? William O'Rourke, disappeared July 12, 1952 after attempted suicide.
Perry: They're the same man. William O'Rourke became a priest named Halliran.
Michael Lerman: Yes, but why?
Perry: I just open doors.
See more »

Alternate Versions

In the theatrical version, there is no voiceover in the final scene while the camera orbits the new Sentinel. The effect of seeing Alison transformed is startling, unsettling, and frightening. For the TV version, a voiceover has been added which diminishes this effect by implying that Alison is much happier in her new life than she was before. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Found (2012) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
Incredible Film and Somewhat Obscure
18 October 2011 | by gavin6942See all my reviews

Not ready for marriage, a fashion model (Cristine Raines) moves into an unbelievably nice Brooklyn Heights apartment, where scary occurrences turn into a much more frightening turn of events.

I have to first call out the cast: Chris Sarandon (so young he is unrecognizable), Jeff Goldblum, Christopher Walken (in a far too small role), Eli Wallach, Jerry Orbach (also quite young), Burgess Meredith, John Carradine... and more (including a very, very small cameo by Richard Dreyfuss). If you think a film with both Walken and Goldblum is a bad idea, you may as well just walk away now.

The biggest thing for me is how I did not know what this film was or had even heard of it. How has it escaped my attention? With that cast, the great plot and solid storytelling? This is really a must-see for horror fans. It has been ranked in the top 100 of the scariest horror films. I have seen 1000s of horror films, and I would debate putting it in the top 100, but it is not a stretch by any means.

Before Dana Barrett opened her refrigerator and found Zuul, this story was out there of another apartment complex with another kind of doorway...


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