ok lets all shit our pants to something old: pre-2006 horror film thread

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I know there are loads of old horror film threads but I wanted a more obvious one for regular discussion of whatever you have seen recently and for recent reissues of older films.

I'll talk again about some of the older films that I mentioned in the other thread. So I'm going to repeat myself a bit.

NIGHT OF THE DEVILS came out on DVD about a year ago and its by the director of Mill Of Stone Women. Early 70s, somewhere between old Bava and more modern gorey stuff. It's about a mostly abandoned forest town with wurdalak style vampires haunting it. I don't think it's a classic but it clearly deserves to emerge out of neglect/obscurity because before it got reissued it seems there was rarely any mention of it and I think it's a lot better than many other 70s Italian horror films. It has some really great images but on the downside it has two vampires dying a screaming death in a laughably unlikely fashion.

Last summer I watched on YouTube two of the 50s versions of GHOST OF YOTSUYA. The late 50s colour version was easily the better version and probably the most glaringly absent film of all the western DVD releases of classic Japanese horror films (such as Kwaidan, Onibaba, Kuroneko, Blind Beast, 60s version of Jigoku, Horrors Of Malformed Men, Lake Of Dracula, Matango, Hausu and Ugetsu). I'd say this was better than most of them actually. Great soundtrack, great ending scenes.
This really needs a proper release, I've heard that Miike's upcoming Over Your Dead Body is a variation on this story that has been filmed roughly ten times. Maybe that'll help this version come out but I wouldn't bet on it. Do you think emailing DVD labels would be worthwhile?

BOXER'S OMEN was another impressive recent viewing mostly for the sheer weirdness and colourful grotesque elements.

MORGIANA is kind of a basic murder mystery plot but it's made worthwhile by the visual styling, great dresses of the mostly female cast and good setting. I'd like to see more of Juraj Herz's horror films but there seems to be nothing available aside from Cremator.

MUMSY NANNY SONNY AND GIRLY was really funny in a way that might annoy a lot of people; it's kind of unique. I love how in America they called it GIRLY and advertised it like a sexploitation film.

Other things I saw not long ago was SISTERS and NIGHTMARE ALLEY, both very good but probably don't need as much introduction.

Robert Adam Gilmour, Monday, 21 April 2014 13:36 (seven years ago) link

Saw BLOOD ON SATAN'S CLAW on tv last night and I'm glad I didn't buy it, I find most British horror films of that era immensely overrated even though I love those gothic and rural visual styles more than anything. Redeeming features are the settings, the odd soundtrack and the lovely dancing naked girl at the end. I think this is a textbook example of conservative horror.

Robert Adam Gilmour, Monday, 21 April 2014 13:52 (seven years ago) link

I sort of felt the same way about Witchfinder General, but eventually warmed up to the thing.

Cronk's Not Cronk (Eric H.), Monday, 21 April 2014 13:56 (seven years ago) link

Isn't Witchfinder General more anti-conservative? I've never seen the whole thing.

I think IN THE MOUTH OF MADNESS deserves way more chat than it gets. It has some really major flaws but I think it's a lot more ambitious, effective and special in places than it ever gets credit for; probably same for Prince Of Darkness but to a lesser extent. Something that strikes me is how Carpenter has always been very pro-showthemonster but you only get a brief glimpse at what was clearly a bunch of monsters that had loads of work put into them. I've never been able to find out about the DVD extras of the film but I remember as a terrified child seeing on tv the special effects studio proudly showing off the monsters and I wonder if that clip is lost forever.

Robert Adam Gilmour, Monday, 21 April 2014 14:05 (seven years ago) link

Not about the conservative angle, just the Britishness of it.

Cronk's Not Cronk (Eric H.), Monday, 21 April 2014 14:16 (seven years ago) link

Which Sisters are you talking about? It's not obviously bringing anything to mind right now.

Morgiana/Mumsy Nanny/Nightmare Alley all top films. The latter I love a possibly inordinate amount. The former, yeah, it's all about the styling, I see it as high gothic meets Mucha meets late '60s/early '70s surrealism. But then I may be talking crap. I actually went to a costume party as Viktorie recently, though I'm not sure how well I pulled it off (or indeed if anyone knew who I was supposed to be).

Looked up Boxer's Omen - that has gone straight on my 'to watch' list.

emil.y, Monday, 21 April 2014 14:24 (seven years ago) link

I think this is a textbook example of conservative horror.

Not entirely sure what you mean - horror kind of revolves around attraction/repulsion towards what's on screen, but I don't think Brit rural folk horror is noticeably more repulsed by its pagan practices than it is attracted...

emil.y, Monday, 21 April 2014 14:27 (seven years ago) link

DePalma's Sisters. A much better film than Scarface or Carrie I'd say.

I think the whole "conservative" horror and fantasy thing is not as easy to decide as some might say but it has been used repeatedly as a critique. Like Tolkien's orcs; pagans and vampires in films being defeated by puritans. Kim Newman talks about this a lot in his book NIGHTMARE MOVIES.

I think the conservative depiction of vampires accusation is harder to justify because it seems sensible to kill vampires who are destroying your families and are killing lots of people in the process. A vampires bloodlust overpowering their their empathy is a good enough explanation for me. The actions of those in Blood On Satan's Claw make sense inside the film, but there is a feeling among lots of critics that this comes from a unfair worldview, particularly when old Christian dudes are getting the violent victory at the end (but in BOSC the guy who kills the demon seems secular).

The depictions of pagans in particular. Like when Moorcock said that you can't really trust Tolkien to tell you that all orcs are pure evil.
I like Christopher Lee but I recall him in a recent interview talking about pagans as if they were a real threat in the modern world.

Ever since Clive Barkers era I think it's been frowned upon in some circles to depict humanoid monsters as unquestionably evil. Some people have accused Machen's "Great God Pan" being misogynist but I don't see that myself.

Robert Adam Gilmour, Monday, 21 April 2014 15:03 (seven years ago) link

hey just fyi this exists too:

sometimes I like to shit my pants oldschool: 1990-1999 horror film thread

Corpsepaint Counterpaint (jjjusten), Monday, 21 April 2014 15:13 (seven years ago) link

Yeah, but the pagans in The Wicker Man are unquestionably the bad guys, but you still side with them over Edward Woodward every time. They're obviously bad, but they're much much cooler and more interesting. So does that make it a conservative film or not?


emil.y, Monday, 21 April 2014 15:15 (seven years ago) link

I'll never forget how as a child, having "good guys" win against monsters made no sense to me, I was horrified when I saw Dracula clumsily falling through cracking ice into freezing water. I think that was Dracula Prince Of Darkness.
Many years later even though my expectations were lower, I was still horrified by a Dracula who was supposed to be "powerful beyond your wildest imaginings" even more clumsily kills himself by getting tricked into walking into too many thorny bushes. That might have been Dracula AD1972.

Robert Adam Gilmour, Monday, 21 April 2014 15:17 (seven years ago) link

I've never been huge on Wicker Man, Woodward doesn't deserve his fate but he is annoying enough that his downfall is funny and satisfying rather than difficult to swallow.

Robert Adam Gilmour, Monday, 21 April 2014 15:20 (seven years ago) link

In the Mouth of Madness is really really great. Miles better than Prince of Darkness.

Sisters was one of Herrmann's last great film scores and it drives me crazy that it is only available on CD in a shitty sounding noise-reduced edition. Someday I'll buy the LP and make a rip of it.

I managed to download Michael (Witchfinder General) Reeves' The Sorcerers off the internet this weekend and am v v psyched to watch it.

Disappearing doorways department: I bookmarked a bunch of 70s british ITV horror items on Youtube a few weeks ago (particularly the Beasts series of short films) but when I went back to watch them the dude's account had been shut down.

hundreds-swarm-dinkytown (Jon Lewis), Monday, 21 April 2014 15:22 (seven years ago) link

looooool @ the new DVD of "The Visitor" what an entertainingly bad movie

Damn I maybe should have called this thread "pre-2005" because "post-2005" probably includes everything in 2005? I'm sure it doesn't matter too much which thread includes 2005 films.

Robert Adam Gilmour, Monday, 21 April 2014 15:49 (seven years ago) link

I'm a huge fan of Nosferatu and the very beautiful Faust (aside from the prolonged romantic comedy section) but I've never tried another Murnau film despite years of opportunity and more complete versions of his other films which has risen their critical standing.
Any recommendations for Phantom or Haunted Castle?

Robert Adam Gilmour, Monday, 21 April 2014 18:09 (seven years ago) link

COFFIN JOE COLLECTION is a bargain even if most of the 9 films are very poor...

AT MIDNIGHT I WILL TAKE YOUR SOUL is okay, it has mainly short bursts of gusto and a freshness of approach about it.

The sequel THIS NIGHT I WILL POSSESS YOUR CORPSE is the only one I'd actually recommend and if you bought the collection for only this, it would be a fair price. There is some overly long boring scenes but it is totally unique and has lots of energy; a few good hysterical scenes with strange imagery, really crazy intro credits too. Sadly the film still has censored dialogue at the end to make it appear as if Coffin Joe repented for his sins.

These first two films also have a strange philosophy that adds a lot to their appeal; but sometimes I wonder if Marins has it all figured out or if he just makes it up to be whatever sounds cool at any given moment. Coffin Joe is supposed to be crazily sexist but the way his female victims fall in love with him so easily make the film's look sexist as a whole. The director and his character are a fascinating phenomenon sometimes (worth reading about how he was regarded in Brazil) but I don't know why the later films have such an imaginative decline.

Aside from the documentary all the other films are really challeningly dull slogs with brief moments of interest and oddity.
Awakening Of The Beast has funny little four legged monster with a tree sprouting from its back, some weird hallucinatory scenes similar to the second film and people with faces painted on their shaking buttocks. A later film has a man discreetly fingering a woman to help her look like she is crying at a funeral.
After sitting through them all, I understand why so few people bothered writing about the later films.

I'm curious about his newer film Embodiment Of Evil. Marins has a reputation for making risky scenes of women being terrorized by creepy crawlies and some people have said the women in this film look genuinely hysterical in a deeply worrying way. He had to take his wife to the hospital to get an insect out her ear as she was screaming that she thought it was inside her brain.

Robert Adam Gilmour, Monday, 21 April 2014 19:05 (seven years ago) link

There needs to be a proper Corman box set of his horror films. I'm reluctant to get a lot of them because a lot of them are underwhelming but they often have just enough going for them for me to crave more and I think they are better than the similar British films of that era.

THE UNDEAD (not seen it but the trailer has a stunning beauty in it)
MASQUE OF THE RED DEATH (should offend dwarves)
PIT AND THE PENDULUM (easily the best of the ones I've seen, good visuals and Barbara Steele)
TOMB OF LIGEIA (a bit dull)
THE TERROR (Karloff and Jack Nicholson, okay)
PREMATURE BURIAL (not seen it)
TALES OF TERROR (not seen it)
THE RAVEN (not seen it)
TOWER OF LONDON (really dull, not to be confused with Karloff film of same name)
HAUNTED PALACE (Lovecraft attempt with some nice visuals and gorgeous lady)

Not sure about comedies like A Bucket Of Blood and Little Shop Of Horrors. I always thought Oblong Box was by Corman but it isn't. Horror Hotel feels like one of them and I'm quite fond of that.

I'm amazed that Corman is still regularly producing films with titles just like he did in the 50s-60s. Anyone seen his newer films?

Robert Adam Gilmour, Monday, 21 April 2014 19:47 (seven years ago) link

Don't get people who are rooting against Sgt Howie in TWM. He may be a bit of a prude but how can you not feel for him? Even on a basic level of empathy for a guy who's clearly trying to do good while all around plot against him.

ewar woowar (or something), Monday, 21 April 2014 20:53 (seven years ago) link

I guess I could feel sorry for him but my excuse is that I saw that clip "Oh God!Oh Jesus Christ!" repeatedly (people link to it regularly on forums and blogs for comic effect) on tv horror film documentaries that had obnoxious spoilers. It is very funny in isolation.
I think those shows spoiled a lot of films and I hope future viewers can experience a lot of these films more freshly than I did. Luckily when I watched Spoorloos/Vanishing, I didn't realise I had previously seen the ending on a clip show until the film finished. That would have ruined it.
Those clip show bastards showed the endings to Suspiria, Nosferatu, Exorcist and Don't Look Now.

It is sad that books aren't more widely discussed but the big benefit is you can read most of the classics without knowing what happens in them.

Robert Adam Gilmour, Monday, 21 April 2014 22:07 (seven years ago) link

Tears of Kali (2004, Andreas Marschall)
German flick about a fictional cult whose meditation methods unleash demons, sounds pretty great. Not great by any means, but intriguing and promising. Unusual ideas, ambitious storytelling and an omnibus structure that keeps things moving. Undercut by distinctly lacklustre cinema. A trial run for something better?

Naked Blood (1996, Hisayasu Sato)
Repeat viewing. An alienated young man invents a serum that causes people to experience pain as pleasure, tragedy ensuses. This film seems known only to hardcore gore & transgression buffs, but I think it's an amazing work of art. A justly notorious (though relatively brief) midfilm auto-cannibalism setpiece drastically limits its potential audience, but I strongly recommend Naked Blood to anyone who thinks they might be able to stomach the gore. Surreal, quietly anguished and strangely haunting. A longtime personal favorite that holds up remarkably well.

Stacy: Attack of the Schoolgirl Zombies (2001, Naoyuki Tomomatsu)
Repeat viewing. A mysterious disease causes young women between the ages of 15 and 17 to die and then return to life as mindless, bloodthirsty zombies. This cheerfully schlocky, superficially comical splatter movie uses its basic situation to tell a number of related (and in most cases overlapping) stories, with varying tone & emphasis. Beneath the goofy surface, however, lies a cryptic and rather disturbing commentary on Japanese schoolgirl fetishism. Sui generis and strangely heartfelt.

katsu kittens (contenderizer), Tuesday, 22 April 2014 06:05 (seven years ago) link

I've seen a fair amount of talk about Naked Blood On this forum. I'm intrigued, I don't think I've even heard the name before.

Robert Adam Gilmour, Tuesday, 22 April 2014 12:32 (seven years ago) link

damn you aren't kidding that tears of kali SOUNDS great! I have to see that despite yr mixed rev.

hundreds-swarm-dinkytown (Jon Lewis), Tuesday, 22 April 2014 15:12 (seven years ago) link

tears of kali is definitely worth a watch, and yeah, the concept had me sold from the get-go. the director's follow-up, masks, is much more assured & satisfying, if a good deal less original.

re naked blood: i genuinely love the move, but it's very hard to recommend. the worst moments (of which there are few) are REALLY nasty, like "some things you can't unsee" level unpleasantness. my sense is that the yuk factor unbalances and overshadows the rest of the film, to the point where even i have to admit that a threshold has been crossed. with that substantial caveat in mind, an amazing piece of work.

katsu kittens (contenderizer), Tuesday, 22 April 2014 18:54 (seven years ago) link

I never go out of my way to seek or avoid violent sickie films; but I've heard a lot of complaints recently about such things and I rarely hear a coherent argument for what is "too far" or what constitutes a unethical way of depicting a reprehensible act.
There are some things I don't like seeing but I can't think of anything that I thought shouldn't have been shown.

Robert Adam Gilmour, Tuesday, 22 April 2014 19:32 (seven years ago) link

i don't mean that naked blood becomes reprehensible as a result of its gore (well it does, but that doesn't bother me in itself). i mean that the nastier moments alter the film's overall tone substantially, perhaps to its artistic detriment. certainly limits the potential audience, which seems a shame.

... I rarely hear a coherent argument for what is "too far" or what constitutes a unethical way of depicting a reprehensible act.

feel you, but i'm not sure that kind of thing should or even can be broken down all logical-like. we all have our limits, and gut-level emotional responses (DO NOT WANT!) are just as valid as more seemingly-coherent intellectual analyses.

katsu kittens (contenderizer), Tuesday, 22 April 2014 19:45 (seven years ago) link

I just went to amazon and bought it there. 20pounds, a little bit too expensive but I'm very intrigued. I'll have to watch this when everyone else is asleep.

Robert Adam Gilmour, Tuesday, 22 April 2014 19:47 (seven years ago) link

A few more things I saw in recent times...

In the music section of this forum I've praised the soundtrack a lot (Libra includes a few Goblin members). When I watched the trailer for this film I decided to not bother with the film because the soundtrack by itself seemed so much more exciting.
But a few years later I got the chance to see it and it was way better than expected. This might even be one of Bava's very best films. A lot of his classic films stand on the strength of their visuals but this is better than most of them as a whole work. This is Bava adjusting to a new era of Italian horror film and he doesn't look remotely out of touch here.
The story is about a dead father who haunts his wife by possessing the body of his son.
Some really strange moments in this film, but really the soundtrack is still my favourite thing about it.

Some people rate this as one of the greatest Japanese horror films ever but it barely made much impression on me. It's made in the form of a documentary, with tv show clips and investigative journalism.

Aside from the appealingly smokey dark visuals and settings, this is yet another incredibly dull Bela Lugosi film with all the willingness and poor comic relief you'd expect.

Sluggish boredom and the expected racism. The lightning massacre at the end was kind of good but I could never recommend the film.

Robert Adam Gilmour, Tuesday, 22 April 2014 21:59 (seven years ago) link

It is weirdly sedate for a gore film, reminds me in some places of Death Powder. I can see how you might think the goriest parts spoil the sleepily surreal parts. The violence is important to the story, so the gore doesn't feel entirely misplaced; perhaps after being warned it didn't seem too bad to me. The naïve quality of the film was interesting.
Looking at the director's filmography there is so many films that got renamed (the director had a different intended title for them all) to sound like taboo pushing rape fantasies, I wonder if they are all porn films or anything like Naked Blood?
There was an advert on the dvd for a film called Sexy Soccer, which looks like the laziest sexploitation film I've ever seen.

This film makes little attempt at being coherent but it has some good stuff in there. Steamy cyberpunk locations, hallucinatory scenes, a humorous music video, groups of scarred people. The version I saw was only partially subtitled.

This is really stiffly animated but it works well enough, the background art has some nice dreamy darkness about it. The first story is pleasingly monstrous, surprisingly scary with a pretty cool twist.
Umezu got a lot of his comics made into live action tv/film but I've never bothered with them apart from this.

This is from Sogo Ishii's quiet phase after his early punk films. An elegant soft black and white ghost story that is only borderline horror, really nice stuff. Ishii's frequent actor Tadanobu Asano stars.

Robert Adam Gilmour, Sunday, 27 April 2014 15:41 (seven years ago) link

From the animation thread, but I properly linked this video because this thread isn't in threat of being overloaded with videos...

Nina Shorina's "Room Of Laughter" here. One of the best films I saw last year. A prime example of what animation can do for horror. If you have ten minutes to spare...


Robert Adam Gilmour, Sunday, 27 April 2014 16:00 (seven years ago) link

Looking at the director's filmography there is so many films that got renamed (the director had a different intended title for them all) to sound like taboo pushing rape fantasies, I wonder if they are all porn films or anything like Naked Blood?

― Robert Adam Gilmour, Sunday, April 27, 2014 8:41 AM (Yesterday)

nearly all of hisayasu sato's other films are softcore sex pictures (though he did direct a memorable segment in 2005's rampo noir horror omnibus). i've downloaded a few of his pinku based on the recommendation of others, but have yet to watch any: survey map of a paradise lost, an aria on gazes and love - 0 = infinity. tbh, i don't know whether the somewhat artful titles here are original or replacements intended to help sell the films to more sensitive western audiences, and i don't really trust imdb on this. he's said to be a well respected director within his micro-genre, an experimental punk artist working at the furthest fringes of commercial cinema. i wouldn't know, and i'm not sure i want to further explore a filmography full of titles like lolita vibrator torture and horse woman dog. he did make a gay pink film called muscle, which sounds intriguing, but i haven't found a torrent.

personally, i see naked blood as an interesting and convincingly anguised peice of outsider art. the fact that the director apparently spent the bulk of his career making sleazy, violent, low budget pornography only adds to the nihilist resonance.

katsu kittens (contenderizer), Monday, 28 April 2014 08:13 (seven years ago) link

and wow, death powder sounds great! thanks for the tip, will watch.

katsu kittens (contenderizer), Monday, 28 April 2014 08:18 (seven years ago) link

Anyone been seeing these recent BFI disc releases? Stuff like M R James/Ghost Story For Christmas collection, Robin Redbreast, Gaslight, Sleepwalker, Dead Of Night, Supernatural and Schalcken The Painter?

Most of this appears to be old British tv shows, I'm sceptical but I've seen some extremely positive reviews for them. I've seen one or two of the M R James episodes and they were fine. I read Le Fanu's Schalcken The Painter recently and I am curious how they'd pull it off for screen.

Robert Adam Gilmour, Thursday, 1 May 2014 23:14 (seven years ago) link

A word of warning: the complete Karloff's Thriller is packaged and blurbed like a pure horror show but really only something like 10 episodes of the 67 are horror; it was really a noir/crime/mystery show. Quite a few people said it was better than Twilight Zone and Outer Limits but I never saw much of them.
It was decent but I never sustained enough interest to watch the whole thing. A lot of the acting is a bit sloppy. The highlights for me were a haunted house story with Rip Torn; a Bloch story about a mirror or glasses that let you see monstrous "true" forms of people; best was a Derleth story with Karloff as a weird pale lethargic scientist covered in cobwebs. But none of this was really enough to justify getting the boxed set.

Robert Adam Gilmour, Thursday, 1 May 2014 23:37 (seven years ago) link

I super dug the three episodes I watched before it was taken off Netflix. Also: tons of fuckin money ass goldsmith scores on those.

Khamma chameleon (Jon Lewis), Thursday, 1 May 2014 23:39 (seven years ago) link

The theme tune was great.

Robert Adam Gilmour, Thursday, 1 May 2014 23:54 (seven years ago) link

100 bloody acres now streaming on us at least netflix

ohhhh lorde 2pac big please mansplain to this sucker (jjjusten), Friday, 2 May 2014 02:11 (seven years ago) link

The Watson/Webber version of Fall Of House Of Usher. I'd say it was among the best silent horror films. Only 12 minutes...

Robert Adam Gilmour, Friday, 2 May 2014 23:09 (seven years ago) link

Any opinions on the 1974 version of Dracula? I guess it's about to be reissued, and Varese Sarabande just issued the soundtrack by Bob Cobert-- I listened to it on spotify today and it's great stuff in the hammer romantic-menace vein (but better recorded than most of the hammer music).

Khamma chameleon (Jon Lewis), Friday, 2 May 2014 23:33 (seven years ago) link

Who was playing that Dracula, it doesn't sound familiar.

Anyone saw Mimic directors cut? Del Toro said he was pleased because he didn't have to disown the film anymore. But I'm still kind of reluctant because unlike Barker's Nighbreed, I never got the sense that it could have been something special if left alone (admittedly based on the opinions of people who saw it before it was butchered). I guess The Keep is another film that people are still hoping for a directors cut.

Robert Adam Gilmour, Saturday, 3 May 2014 23:29 (seven years ago) link

Just watched my new copy of IN THE MOUTH OF MADNESS (not a good copy, I think it's Korean, it has way too small a screen size), I hadn't seen it in maybe more than 10 years and it holds up less well than I had imagined.
The light metal music in the intro/outro doesn't set the tone very well. I remembered the film being cheesy with the appearance of the evil writer and the clichéd scary children but I didn't remember the goofy humour at all, with all those wisecracks.
I used to be freaked out by Sam Neill laughing in the cinema but I guess there was nothing wrong with that part, I'm just older. I kept thinking Neill didn't care that much about his performance or maybe he thought this was going to be closer to a horror comedy than it really was. It's unbelievable and funny how he makes a map from the book covers.

What is still quite effective is the disordered reality scenes almost like Jacob's Ladder, a lot of the driving scenes with the tunnels, dark roads and the cyclist; I liked the creatures (especially the main tunnel scene that is very similar to Lovecraft's "At The Mountains Of Madness") and the church interior too.

2 taglines: "Lived any good books lately?" and "Reality isn't what it used to be".

I have really strong memories of being very young and even terrified of this films existence, trying to avoid looking at pictures of it. As a young teen finding it pretty scary too.

It isn't great but I don't know why it rarely gets mentioned for quite a long time.

Robert Adam Gilmour, Sunday, 4 May 2014 14:38 (seven years ago) link

One of my favourite sites heavily recommended an obscurity called Atrapados that sounded really great...

Now he linked to vimeo where the director has uploaded the film...
I hope I can watch it soon if my internet speed gets fixed.

Robert Adam Gilmour, Sunday, 4 May 2014 14:50 (seven years ago) link

I'd watch a Keep director's cut out of curiosity, but the film is perfect as is

lauded at conferences of deluded psychopaths (Sparkle Motion), Sunday, 4 May 2014 22:46 (seven years ago) link

I think the reason it has never had a DVD release is possibly the difficulty of finally putting together the directors cut. Not sure what is stopping Nightbreed.

Robert Adam Gilmour, Sunday, 4 May 2014 22:51 (seven years ago) link


I got an unexpected amount of pleasure seeing a musclebound hero who is also a convincing, likable everyman (for lack of a better word). Not a fan of Arnold Schwarzenegger, I don't mind Stallone but I could do with more big muscle guys who seem approachable in films. Don't think I've seen a film with The Rock in it but he seems nice.

I'm very familiar with the majority of Carpenter's films but for some reason I had never heard of They Live until a few years ago.

Great funny long fight scene. The thing I liked least is the very forced sounding wise cracks and cheesy lines.

Robert Adam Gilmour, Sunday, 11 May 2014 00:26 (seven years ago) link

Been looking around for Jean Rollin DVDs and some are prominently labelled for being uncut but I don't think any of his films have been censored for decades have they? He seems way too tame to be censored into the DVD age.

Robert Adam Gilmour, Monday, 12 May 2014 00:22 (seven years ago) link

Are the Dr Phibes films worthwhile?

Robert Adam Gilmour, Thursday, 15 May 2014 18:18 (seven years ago) link

I had passed on The Hunger and Paul Schrader's version of Cat People many times because I never bought the hype, they didn't sound interesting to me. I lump them together as very 80s sexy horror films that were very modern and cool for their time, I guess Near Dark might even fit in there. But I finally watched both this weekend and I'm glad I did.

Cat People feels like a radical new interpretation possibly more based on the source short story than the original film (?), I have to agree with the camp that prefers this to the Lewton film (I think there were better Lewton films), there were so many aspects I don't recall in the older film. Kinski was really sweet in this.

The Hunger was a real surprise. I don't have much experience with Tony Scott but I was never remotely attracted to most of his output that I know of (I have heard he has done lesser known great stuff); so I was amazed that this is one of the most visually impressive and stylish films I've ever seen; really beautiful at times. A lot of old makeup jobs look terrible but the makeup for aging Bowie was very impressive. This is the type of surprise that makes me think that sometimes I should listen to hype when I'm reluctant.

Robert Adam Gilmour, Sunday, 18 May 2014 01:58 (seven years ago) link

first doctor phibes is fun, not great, but a nice period piece, great production design. second is a wash.

dig both the hunger and shrader's cat people remake, moreso the former. other than that and true romance, though, i've never had much use for tony scott.

katsu kittens (contenderizer), Sunday, 18 May 2014 04:16 (seven years ago) link

This might be kind of silly but Angel Witch's Dr Phibes tune made me think "wow, maybe if that film inspired such great music maybe the film is great too".

Robert Adam Gilmour, Sunday, 18 May 2014 12:30 (seven years ago) link

On reading a bit, the anime is a prequel and there is a SNES action-platormer and a PS1 beat'em-up.

The director of the films has an interesting character design CV for videogames.

Robert Adam Gilmour, Monday, 8 March 2021 21:41 (four months ago) link

two weeks pass...

The monsters of Kamen Rider ZO (1993) pic.twitter.com/Xmw4uooG1G

— HTOP (@Htop_Gunder) March 25, 2021

Is anyone interested in the Hands Of Orlac release? I heard someone say it was a huge disappointment years ago so I've never had much interest until now.

Robert Adam Gilmour, Friday, 26 March 2021 23:06 (four months ago) link

I bought the Norman J Warren box after he died and hadn't seen Prey in years.

That's one immensely fucked up film, the alien creature plot is totally secondary to the story of Josephine's abusive relationship behaviour and how the pair of them just seem to assume Anderson is some mentally ill guy they can treat badly and he'll take it.

Well *I* know who he is (aldo), Saturday, 3 April 2021 20:46 (three months ago) link

Currently working my way through the new William Grefé blu-ray boxed set. Seven low budget indie features made in Florida between 1966 and 1977 (not including Stanley which may be his best, nor Impulse starring William Shatner which I've not seen).

There's some horror in here (eg Death Curse of Tartu (1966)), some action thrillers, some noirish stuff, lots of hippie exploitation (the director evidently was down with the Haight-Ashbury-style hippie scene of Coconut Grove in Miami); there's also plenty of animals that attack. This is a director who's very comfortable with dangerous wildlife.

Best of all is the seedy, sordid, often fetid atmosphere that's typically present throughout Grefé's filmography.

I started with The Naked Zoo (1970) which is a potboiler about a modish young playboy type/writer having an affair with, of all people, the middle-aged Rita Hayworth. Not quite as fascinating as I remembered it from watching it in some bleary state on a late-night cable showing back in the early '90s. Pacing is poor and the plot elements don't really fit together. Fun to see Hayworth in this setting though. And still wonderful and priceless is a scene with Canned Heat performing at a hippie house party, this scene having been inserted by another director after Grefé turned in his final cut.

A genuine horror is Mako: The Jaws of Death (1976) about an antisocial shark whisperer played by Richard Jaeckel, and his misadventures with an unscrupulous bar owner in the Florida Keys. The stuntwork involving real sharks is phenomenal and truly frightening... more convincing than Jaws! The plot is generally implausible and marred by leaps of logic, but Jaeckel plays it as straight as possible (many of the other cast members are locals, per the director's usual m.o.).

Also watched The Hooked Generation (1968), an action thriller about drug running starring Jeremy Slate, with support work from Coconut Grove hipppies. Not terrible. Fun climax in a mangrove swamp that is actually a public park in Miami. For those more interested in horror, the set also includes The Sting of Death (1966), about killer jellyfish, and a Deliverance-style murderous redneck shocker called Whiskey Mountain (1977), among other goodies.

Josefa, Sunday, 4 April 2021 17:09 (three months ago) link

One of the coolest things I ever made was this boardgame based on the world of Jean Rollin. Art by Jessica Seamans and hand-sculpted tokens by Dan Martin. pic.twitter.com/BiPcT9JQCc

— Kier-La Janisse (@bigsmashkierla) March 16, 2021

Robert Adam Gilmour, Tuesday, 13 April 2021 19:22 (three months ago) link

xpost If I have one major complaint about Arrow, it's how ridiculously limited-edition some of their stuff is. That Grefé set was released, what, a couple months ago? I've read more about it recently that piqued my interest (including your post!) but now afaict it's already out of freakin print.

You Can't Have the Woogie Without a Little Boogie (Old Lunch), Tuesday, 13 April 2021 20:44 (three months ago) link

finally watching ravenous (1999)

this movie is WILD

intern at pepe le pew research (Simon H.), Wednesday, 14 April 2021 00:26 (three months ago) link

That Grefé set was released, what, a couple months ago? I've read more about it recently that piqued my interest (including your post!) but now afaict it's already out of freakin print.

I saw this just before I gave the Arrow Easter sale one last look and added it to my cart on the off chance it would let me. It turned up today so there are copies in the UK at least.

Well *I* know who he is (aldo), Tuesday, 20 April 2021 10:29 (three months ago) link

Sad to report that Grefé's Whiskey Mountain is pretty dull, despite a good cast (incl Christopher George, Roberta Collins). It was shot in North Carolina instead of Grefé's usual territory of Florida. Having poor sound does not help.

Josefa, Tuesday, 20 April 2021 15:45 (three months ago) link

two weeks pass...

(rare) Max Schreck taking a break filming 'Nosferatu' (1922) This photo is creepier than any shot in the movie pic.twitter.com/sQ2iCiN1wj

— Hammer Horror Films (@HorrorHammer1) May 1, 2021

Robert Adam Gilmour, Tuesday, 4 May 2021 20:28 (two months ago) link

dead and buried, 1981 slow motion seaside village horror a la messiah of evil, currently available on shudder, fog in every scene, totally fucking amazing

mellon collie and the infinite bradness (BradNelson), Monday, 17 May 2021 15:51 (two months ago) link

This has been a crown jewel in Blue Underground's catalog for so long I'm shocked I still haven't seen it. Was featured in the second installment of In Search of Darkness, though, and it looks fantastic.

i carry the torch for disco inauthenticity (Eric H.), Monday, 17 May 2021 15:53 (two months ago) link

There's a second installment of In Search of Darkness!? I think I saw most of the first one, and it was iirc 4 1/2 hours long! And was basically just a parade of talking heads going "and then this movie came out, and it was really cool," and then moving on to the next movie.

Josh in Chicago, Monday, 17 May 2021 16:02 (two months ago) link

Totally forgot that I bought Dead and Buried from a Blue Underground sale late last year. I should get on that.

Slime Goobody (Old Lunch), Monday, 17 May 2021 16:22 (two months ago) link

All criticisms of In Search of Darkness are 100% correct and I also 100% don't care.

i carry the torch for disco inauthenticity (Eric H.), Monday, 17 May 2021 16:24 (two months ago) link

xpost that was just included on Last Drive-In on Shudder

Feta Van Cheese (Neanderthal), Monday, 17 May 2021 16:24 (two months ago) link

i've heard the second in search of darkness is an improvement on the first

mellon collie and the infinite bradness (BradNelson), Monday, 17 May 2021 16:30 (two months ago) link

The selection of films feels more esoteric, fwiw, and there's definitely more of a laser focus on the Italio horror of the early 80s.

Also, a somewhat hilarious meta moment where the doc includes Terror in the Aisles as one of its featured movies.

i carry the torch for disco inauthenticity (Eric H.), Monday, 17 May 2021 16:33 (two months ago) link

Dead and Buried is the other great horror film directed by Gary (Death Line) Sherman. It was actually considered a 'video nasty' in the UK on its first VHS release, probably because of the old needle to the eyeball moment.

Ward Fowler, Monday, 17 May 2021 17:52 (two months ago) link

I've passed it up many times but I might give it a shot soon

Robert Adam Gilmour, Monday, 17 May 2021 21:14 (two months ago) link

Fade To Black looks pretty good, anyone seen it?

Robert Adam Gilmour, Saturday, 22 May 2021 18:26 (two months ago) link

i enjoyed it quite a bit

mellon collie and the infinite bradness (BradNelson), Saturday, 22 May 2021 19:06 (two months ago) link

watched the original Nosferatu this afternoon, 99 years old

koogs, Saturday, 22 May 2021 22:52 (two months ago) link

saw it a couple of years ago, it was a memorable film

Dan S, Saturday, 22 May 2021 23:00 (two months ago) link

pretty influential. the 25 minute Grayling talk about it was also interesting (this was the bfi disk).

my usual concentration span failings seem to be doubled when watching silent films though - without the speech telling me to pay attention i tend to drift away

koogs, Sunday, 23 May 2021 03:31 (two months ago) link

Rewatched Dead and Buried after many, many years, thanks to this thread. Still holds up imho. I misremembered the film as being quite comic - a la O'Bannon's Return of the Living Dead - but in fact it's not even especially a 'black comedy', just an out and out shocker. You can sort of see why it got caught up in the Video Nasty scare, despite having more production values than most of the VNs - there's a certain dreamy disconnected energy that's not that far removed from Fulci's House by the Cemetery etc - as well as some fairly graphic gore, especially for an American horror movie at this time. The bandaged man who gets his eyeball needled really looks looks terrified - it's a great image of fear. Perhaps the one major downside is that the central sheriff guy isn't very charismatic and seems kind of slow on the uptake even for movies of this type - his wife teaching kids at her school about voodoo while hiding books about witchcraft around the house does provide some laughs, and brings the film closer to Night of the Eagle than Night of the Living Dead. The sequence where the sheriff watches some black and white film he's got developed by the sinister local chemist already feels v v 'found footage horror' - all the paraphernalia of old cameras, film projectors, flash lights seen throughout now becomes a wonderful snapshot of old means of seeing, as well as a fairly unique portent of sinister intent, still, wisely not too literally explained.

Ward Fowler, Sunday, 23 May 2021 14:58 (two months ago) link


xzanfar, Monday, 24 May 2021 02:39 (two months ago) link

two weeks pass...

The video isn't one of his best but I'm really happy to see somebody with a big audience talking about Lemora, fingers crossed for a bluray

Robert Adam Gilmour, Saturday, 12 June 2021 21:28 (one month ago) link

finally watched Maniac Cop, not the tone I was expecting and bruce campbell kinda phones it in but overall a lot of fun, stoked to watch the sequels

intern at pelican brief consulting (Simon H.), Saturday, 12 June 2021 21:49 (one month ago) link

Maniac Cop 2 is maybe better and more fun and features a pretty novel car chase conceit that I've never seen before and I have no idea how the stuntwoman made it through the scene without sustaining severe carpal injuries. Haven't heard much good about the third, though.

Jerome Percival Jesus (Old Lunch), Saturday, 12 June 2021 22:09 (one month ago) link

I remain very interested in the refn/hyams reboot series

intern at pelican brief consulting (Simon H.), Saturday, 12 June 2021 22:13 (one month ago) link

Finally! I've got a czech dvd of this but I'm so happy about this

Robert Adam Gilmour, Saturday, 26 June 2021 18:14 (one month ago) link

Watched Night of the Eagle aka Burn, Witch, Burn! last night, holy shit did I ever love that. great script, really inventive direction, awesome effects, engaging performances, a killer premise, and an ending that doesn't shit the bed. (also, since it involves witches and voodoo, I kept waiting for overt racism and/or misogyny, but it never really materializes much - I'm sure it helped that this fellow apparently wrote the final draft) the US version, which is under the latter title, adds a wonderful voice-only intro that is already one of my favorite-ever openings to a movie

intern at pelican brief consulting (Simon H.), Saturday, 26 June 2021 18:38 (one month ago) link

Just saw that for the first time a few months back. VG+, a much more serious-minded horror flick than most Arkoff productions of that era. As much love as I have for AIP's campy goof-fests, it's a welcome change of pace.

I wld say that Night of the Eagle/Burn With Burn is Baxt's best credit, although City of the Dead has some nice atmos.

Peter Wyngarde gives a 'full' performance in NOTE/BWB but he's pretty effective playing/conveying fear in the face of unseen terror.

Ward Fowler, Saturday, 26 June 2021 19:31 (one month ago) link

he really grew on me over the course of the movie for sure

intern at pelican brief consulting (Simon H.), Saturday, 26 June 2021 19:32 (one month ago) link

horror channel uk seems to be working through cronenberg movies. and i must've seen Scanners before, but i hadn't recognised the sample on, i think, Dubstep Allstars Volume 2 until today.

koogs, Saturday, 3 July 2021 11:48 (four weeks ago) link

(yeah, DA2, specifically Loefah's Goat Stare

koogs, Saturday, 3 July 2021 14:25 (four weeks ago) link


koogs, Saturday, 3 July 2021 14:25 (four weeks ago) link

two weeks pass...

Worth a watch, I have a bootleg of this. Adapted from Umezu's comic, he makes a brief appearance.

Robert Adam Gilmour, Monday, 19 July 2021 00:46 (one week ago) link

shudder just added messiah of evil. if you have not seen messiah of evil, drop everything

STOCK FIST-PUMPER BRAD (BradNelson), Monday, 19 July 2021 01:20 (one week ago) link

Dead and Buried is the other great horror film directed by Gary (Death Line) Sherman. It was actually considered a 'video nasty' in the UK on its first VHS release, probably because of the old needle to the eyeball moment.

― Ward Fowler, Monday, May 17, 2021 6:52 PM (two months ago)

Quite surprised by this. Just watched Dead And Buried and found it a little underwhelming despite good moments. Script seemed a bit cliched and the acting didn't smooth over it. Style of Death Line is just completely different.

Robert Adam Gilmour, Monday, 19 July 2021 20:05 (one week ago) link

I am psyched to see Messiah of Evil at some point but I don't have Shudder so someone needs to put the blu-ray back in print.

Fun fact: it's written and directed by the folks that brought us Howard the Duck! I won't hold that against it, though.

Marty J. Bilge (Old Lunch), Monday, 19 July 2021 20:26 (one week ago) link

Abel Ferrara watching The Driller Killer, the good stuff. pic.twitter.com/QHVcyuAMhH

— John Frankensteiner (@JFrankensteiner) October 20, 2020

Robert Adam Gilmour, Monday, 19 July 2021 22:37 (one week ago) link

Messiah of Evil is gd fun - in parts it's the most proto-Lynchian film I can think of - but it does have one of the all-time lame endings (they ran out of money before they could shoot a proper finale).

Ward Fowler, Monday, 19 July 2021 23:36 (one week ago) link

I missed the recent Eureka release of Viy with the bonus limited edition extra film called Sveto Mesto/A Holy Place. Luckily it is on youtube in a probably scratchier but very watchable form.
It's one of the most substantially different versions of Viy I've seen (let's forget about the recent one). More sex, ballbusting, an angry cat and the witch seduces women too. Doesn't have the full-on phantasmagoria of the other ones, but takes interesting directions, definitely worthwhile.

Robert Adam Gilmour, Sunday, 25 July 2021 19:04 (one week ago) link

that ferrara commentary is hilarious

Yours in Sorrow, A Schoolboy: (forksclovetofu), Wednesday, 28 July 2021 03:47 (four days ago) link

Yeah, next time I pick up any of his films I'll check for commentary. Kind of great to hear him just laughing at the really nasty bits.

Robert Adam Gilmour, Wednesday, 28 July 2021 21:52 (four days ago) link

Just got the Daimajin boxed set (the trilogy all came out within 7 or 8 months in 1966!) and reading an essay in the booklet about the cultural impact. A ton of famous writers and directors were going to do reboots. Katsuhiro Otomo scripted a film that was going to feature Steven Seagal and Golden Harvest was going to co-produce one featuring Kevin Costner. There's a very expensive fan film that was well liked but copyright prevents it getting a proper release

Seems that Kim Newman stuffed his recent Anno Dracula books with an extensive list of japanese monsters including Daimajin and even Kato from Teito Monogatari (the character that M Bison/Vega from Street Fighter was based on)

Robert Adam Gilmour, Wednesday, 28 July 2021 22:07 (four days ago) link

Daimajin and (at last) Criterion Godzilla set on their way to me, psyched for big-time kaiju filmfest

Marty J. Bilge (Old Lunch), Wednesday, 28 July 2021 22:20 (four days ago) link

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