Cincinnati Art Museum to Screen Arthouse Horror Films in Its Parking Lot

This artfully freaky double feature includes 1977 Japanese horror film House and 1962's Carnival of Souls.

A still from Nobuhiko Obayashi's House - Photo: Provided by Cincinnati Art Museum
Photo: Provided by Cincinnati Art Museum
A still from Nobuhiko Obayashi's House

UPDATE: This event has been postponed due to weather. The CAM says, "We will reschedule an indoor screening in 2022, so stay tuned for future updates."

If you're looking for a more high-brow horror experience this Halloween, the Cincinnati Art Museum is screening two bizarrely wonderful freaky films in its parking lot.

During its Horror Film Fest: Haunted, the CAM will present a double feature of 1977's House and 1962's Carnival of Souls starting at 7:30 p.m. Oct. 15. Films are free to watch and will be screened near the top of the Art Climb. (If it rains or there is severe weather, the event will be canceled, so check the CAM's social media.)

Both are Criterion Collection classics and so, so weird.

House is truly, as the CAM describes it, a "hallucinatory head trip." Directed by Nobuhiko Obayashi, the Japanese film with English subtitles follows a group of schoolgirls as they travel to one of their aunt's country houses. What follows is a slightly comical psychedelic nightmare of a sleepover full of cannibalistic pianos, vampiric spirits and floating heads that will bite your butt. 

According to the CAM, Obayashi "fashioned the script after the eccentric musings of his 11-year-old daughter, then employed all the tricks in his analog arsenal (mattes, animation, and collage) to make them a visually astonishing, raucous reality."

You can tell and it's awesome.

Carnival of Souls is a black-and-white B-movie from director Herk Harvey. Here's the CAM description: 

A young woman (Candace Hilligoss) in a small Kansas town survives a drag race accident, then agrees to take a job as a church organist in Salt Lake City. En route, she is haunted by a bizarre apparition that compels her toward an abandoned lakeside pavilion. Made by industrial filmmakers on a small budget, the eerily effective B-movie classic Carnival of Souls was intended to have “the look of a Bergman and the feel of a Cocteau” — and, with its strikingly used locations and spooky organ score, it succeeds. Herk Harvey’s macabre masterpiece gained a cult following on late-night television and continues to inspire filmmakers today.  

Here's the trailer for House

And the trailer for Carnival of Souls

Horror Film Fest: Haunted takes place in the Cincinnati Art Museum parking lot (953 Eden Park Drive, Mount Adams) 7:30-11 p.m. Oct. 15. For more info, visit

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