Our elementary school librarian ran a VHS movie for us one afternoon in the '80s. It could have been a TV special or even 8mm film. It was full-colour late-70s/early-80s cinematography. It had a Disney-type feel and it was not violent, so it was probably meant for kids.

It was likely a kids' film. It felt Hollywood spooky. It featured two young characters exploring an old Victorian house who encountered a glowing red orb or sphere inside. It floated around room to room glowing red. I remember it at the top of the stairs. I specifically remember that when the kids entered the house it was a calm, clear night. However, when they looked through a window near the stairwell it was storming outside. The kids were not supposed to be in the house.

It wasn't the Phantasm or House, as I was only about 12 at the time attending Catholic school.

2 Answers 2


You are looking for… (drumroll)

The Red Room Riddle - CBS 1984

This episode was hosted by the ventriloquist Willie Tyler & his dummy "Lester". Two young boys, Todd & Bill, go snooping into an alleged haunted house as a club initiation. One of the upstairs rooms was supposedly inhabiting a ghost by the name of Jamie Bly, who was a young boy who burned in the room years before. He had a dog, as well. The entire mansion was filled with ghosts, from Bly, to his old caretaker, to the maid, to everything. This episode featured the misadventures of the two boys as they entered the property & wandered inside the mansion.

The orb in the house

  • 1
    Is there a glowing red sphere?
    – Valorum
    Aug 30, 2022 at 8:30
  • 1
    @user157359 I added an image from the film that shows the red orb. Aug 30, 2022 at 9:11
  • Bill and Todd's excellent adventure!
    – Peter M
    Aug 30, 2022 at 14:48

This made me think of the 1972 CBS television movie Something Evil, directed by a young Steven Spielberg. (In many ways, it feels like a early attempt at Poltergeist, which Spielberg wrote and produced.)

The time period fits, and Something Evil definitely has a couple of elements mentioned in the question: There are two kids, who end up living with their parents in an old farmhouse; they (and their mother) spend some time exploring the house and its barn. One of the manifestations of the haunting is glowing red blobs that appear in sealed jars (all the special effects budget was good for, I guess), which Spielberg frequently tends to shoot at very close range, such as here.

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