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 (four years ago) Permalink

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 (four years ago) Permalink

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 (four years ago) Permalink

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 (four years ago) Permalink

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

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

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 (four years ago) Permalink

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 (four years ago) Permalink

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 (four years ago) Permalink

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 (four years ago) Permalink

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 (four years ago) Permalink

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 (four years ago) Permalink

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 (four years ago) Permalink

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 (four years ago) Permalink

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

How dare you tarnish the reputation of Turturro's yodel (Shakey Mo Collier), Monday, 21 April 2014 15:26 (four years ago) Permalink

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 (four years ago) Permalink

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 (four years ago) Permalink

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 (four years ago) Permalink

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 (four years ago) Permalink

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 (four years ago) Permalink

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 (four years ago) Permalink

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 (four years ago) Permalink

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 (four years ago) Permalink

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 (four years ago) Permalink

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 (four years ago) Permalink

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 (four years ago) Permalink

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 (four years ago) Permalink

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 (four years ago) Permalink

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 (four years ago) Permalink

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 (four years ago) Permalink

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 (four years ago) Permalink

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 (four years ago) Permalink

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

katsu kittens (contenderizer), Monday, 28 April 2014 08:18 (four years ago) Permalink

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 (four years ago) Permalink

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 (four years ago) Permalink

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 (four years ago) Permalink

The theme tune was great.

Robert Adam Gilmour, Thursday, 1 May 2014 23:54 (four years ago) Permalink

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 (four years ago) Permalink

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 (four years ago) Permalink

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 (four years ago) Permalink

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 (four years ago) Permalink

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 (four years ago) Permalink

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 (four years ago) Permalink

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 (four years ago) Permalink

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 (four years ago) Permalink


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 (four years ago) Permalink

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 (four years ago) Permalink

Are the Dr Phibes films worthwhile?

Robert Adam Gilmour, Thursday, 15 May 2014 18:18 (four years ago) Permalink

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 (four years ago) Permalink

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 (four years ago) Permalink

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 (four years ago) Permalink

Groves delivers again.


Robert Adam Gilmour, Saturday, 27 October 2018 19:12 (three months ago) Permalink

THE OTHERS (2001) - Nicole Kidman looks goddamn amazing in this. The whole movie has a great palette and style. Unfortunately it's been so long I already knew the twist going on, but it was still a cool, stylish throwback to '50s horror - sort of a black and white film done in early '00s color.

M. Night Shyamalan's THE VILLAGE (2004) - I'm seeing some very positive appraisals on Letterboxd and... no. This is bad. Good cast and some decent film-making overall (Deakins helped a lot), but the story and infamous twist ending is so awful it makes the movie pretty irredeemable - everyone was right back then. Really glad Shyamalan's learned to rein himself in as I liked his last two, THE VISIT and SPLIT. Looking forward to GLASS.

Nhex, Wednesday, 31 October 2018 18:00 (three months ago) Permalink

the village is bad, though like all the terrible shyamalan films, it has a fantastic JN Howard score

valet doberman (Jon not Jon), Wednesday, 31 October 2018 18:49 (three months ago) Permalink

didn't realize he used the same composer all the way up through After Earth, damn

Nhex, Wednesday, 31 October 2018 23:48 (three months ago) Permalink

I've been practically living at the Quad Cinema in the West Village lately, taking in as many of their Sapphic Vampires series as possible. Very impressed by the diversity of approaches to this basic idea - the Hammer Films style is nothing like Jean Rollin's style which is nothing like Jesus Franco's style, and so on...

Hammer's The Vampire Lovers works brilliantly thanks to flawless casting, Ingrid Pitt foremost, but really all the women in this are perfect. The film uses subtext expertly. Twins of Evil is an amusing follow-up; the actual twin actresses have a loony appeal, and the moment when Peter Cushing announces his realization that he's dealing with actual TWINS OF EVIL is priceless.

The Belgian Harry Kümel's Daughters of Darkness deserves its high reputation, with the casting of Delphine Seyrig as the main vampire being crucial. Too bad the 35mm print the Quad showed was so washed out because this is a film with an amazing color palette.

I have plenty of time for the bold weirdness of Jean Rollin's films: The Nude Vampire, The Shiver of the Vampires, and Fascination are all audacious and right out there on the edge of incoherence. These films' eroticism is uniquely matter-of-fact, not teasing, and the director seems to be starting from a comfort zone of transgression and coming to horror, rather than the reverse.

Jesus Franco's Vampyros Lesbos may be the most genuinely erotic of them all, something of a masterpiece - certainly one of Franco's best films. Again casting is crucial, and he nails it with Soledad Miranda and Ewa Strömberg. Franco does the reality/dream confusion better than anyone.

Tony Scott's The Hunger is solidly entertaining, though I wish that the idea suggested by the earlier scenes - that it's all a sort of music video - had carried through the entire film. I think Susan Sarandon is right that the ending doesn't really make sense.

It's in Vicente Aranda's The Blood-Spattered Bride that the theme of the inadequacy of men, common to all these films, is most pronounced, with the lead actor here being the creepiest in a field of creeps.

Of the films in this series I missed, I'm most curious about Roger Vadim's Blood and Roses, which predates the circa-1970 explosion of this mini-genre by ten years.

Josefa, Friday, 2 November 2018 15:49 (three months ago) Permalink

I would also recommend Universal's Dracula's Daughter (1936) as an all-subtext precursor to this particular subgenre.

a butt, at which the shaft of ridicule is daily glanced (Old Lunch), Friday, 2 November 2018 15:56 (three months ago) Permalink

Right, that was in the series too - I saw that years ago, time to revisit

Josefa, Friday, 2 November 2018 16:01 (three months ago) Permalink

I gotta get to the Quad one of these days, love the programming they have there.
Vampire Lovers is great, didn't realize there was a series of these movies.
Vampyros Lesbos is all-time, I love it.
The Hunger is awesome. The ending doesn't make sense because it was studio-mandated to leave it open for a sequel, it really should've ended like five minutes before.

Nhex, Friday, 2 November 2018 21:47 (three months ago) Permalink

Josefa- Have you seen british film Vampyres (1974)? It's definitely in this type.

I do appreciate the matter-of-factness in Rollin.

Twins Of Evil is my favorite of the Karnstein (?) trilogy.

Wish there were a few more films like The Hunger.

Robert Adam Gilmour, Saturday, 3 November 2018 10:18 (three months ago) Permalink

Yeah, I've seen Vampyres and own the DVD - that's another to rewatch, I remember it being well made

Josefa, Saturday, 3 November 2018 14:50 (three months ago) Permalink

Damn, '50s version of War of the Worlds is as uncompromising as any film I've seen from that era. Kinda figured they'd pussyfoot with the genocide and destruction and apocalyptic vibe but nope. Really well done, to boot.

a butt, at which the shaft of ridicule is daily glanced (Old Lunch), Saturday, 3 November 2018 23:30 (three months ago) Permalink

in addition to lords of salem last weekend, i watched another satanic horror called evilspeak from 1981, the message of which is that satan is incredibly awesome and will help you destroy your enemies if you summon him through a computer. i loved this movie so much though i should warn anybody sensitive to it that there's a pretty brutal dog death (not directly on camera) in it

princess of hell (BradNelson), Friday, 9 November 2018 19:40 (three months ago) Permalink

fell asleep during the Blackcoat's Daughter last night :(

Οὖτις, Friday, 9 November 2018 19:41 (three months ago) Permalink

pretty sure that's the intended effect

princess of hell (BradNelson), Friday, 9 November 2018 19:42 (three months ago) Permalink

(but this is the pre-2005 thread shakey)

princess of hell (BradNelson), Friday, 9 November 2018 19:42 (three months ago) Permalink

haha oops

Οὖτις, Friday, 9 November 2018 19:43 (three months ago) Permalink

Brad, when you're trying to sell people on Evilspeak, it's important to note that it's an essential entry in the 'past-prime Clint Howard inexplicably trying to pass himself off as a teenager' subgenre (see also: Rock n' Roll High School). I think they mention in one of the special features that he was actually wearing a toupee for the film.

Always noble, with stunning good looks and genious IQ (Old Lunch), Friday, 9 November 2018 19:47 (three months ago) Permalink

Why they ever tried to pull this trick with him of all people is beyond me. Dude looked like was in his early fifties as a child actor.

Always noble, with stunning good looks and genious IQ (Old Lunch), Friday, 9 November 2018 19:48 (three months ago) Permalink

In a July 2017 interview for Gilbert Gottfried's Amazing Colossal Podcast, Howard also revealed that the film's producers made him pay for his own toupée.


howard is really great in it

princess of hell (BradNelson), Friday, 9 November 2018 19:50 (three months ago) Permalink

but yes he does not remotely look like a high schooler

princess of hell (BradNelson), Friday, 9 November 2018 19:50 (three months ago) Permalink

The label Screenbound uploaded this trailer but isn't showing up on amazon and there's no details of the release date or format. But then another source says Second Sight (a better label) is releasing it on bluray next year, so I'm guessing it changed hands but it's still on the Screenbound site and youtube page. The trailer looks stylish and great, so I'm tempted to get the Australian bluray (part of the Ozploitation Classics series) rather than wait. But Second Sight are such a great label so I should wait.

Robert Adam Gilmour, Friday, 9 November 2018 22:11 (three months ago) Permalink

i was just completely blown away by bob clark’s deathdream/dead of night. it could be the best horror film of the ‘70s? so sad and haunted and traumatized, the performances of the parents are outstanding, the cinematography is perfectly desolate and dark. i love black christmas to death but what i just saw was someone’s masterpiece

princess of hell (BradNelson), Saturday, 10 November 2018 16:40 (three months ago) Permalink

great movie!

wayne trotsky (Simon H.), Saturday, 10 November 2018 17:03 (three months ago) Permalink

Bob Clark had the weirdest fucking career

wayne trotsky (Simon H.), Saturday, 10 November 2018 17:03 (three months ago) Permalink

I was a tad let down by it but it is pretty decent. What I remember most was Ormsby in the commentary saying how awful he felt about making his son cry for the film.

Clark definitely has a weird career, he was planning to remake Children Shouldn't Play With Dead Things, I'm quite fond of the orignal. A Christmas Story and Murder By Decree are supposed to be good but I never cared enough to try them.

Robert Adam Gilmour, Saturday, 10 November 2018 17:22 (three months ago) Permalink

deathdream rules, deserves to be much better known

Nhex, Saturday, 10 November 2018 19:14 (three months ago) Permalink

i was just completely blown away by bob clark’s deathdream/dead of night. it could be the best horror film of the ‘70s? so sad and haunted and traumatized, the performances of the parents are outstanding, the cinematography is perfectly desolate and dark. i love black christmas to death but what i just saw was someone’s masterpiece

Agreed with every bit of this. Of all the movies not typically mentioned when the topic turns to great American horror movies c. 1968-1978, Deathdream is maybe the one movie I deeply wish was commonly accepted as being up there with Texas Chain Saw Massacre, NOTLD, Carrie, etc.

I Never Promised You A Hose Harden (Eric H.), Sunday, 11 November 2018 21:52 (three months ago) Permalink

I want to see it so bad now!

(Loved the hell out of Black Christmas)

valet doberman (Jon not Jon), Sunday, 11 November 2018 22:39 (three months ago) Permalink

one month passes...

The Singing Ringing Tree - I mostly heard about this film as something that scared children and was supposed to be particularly strange, so I was disappointed. It feels overlong for such a short film but it does have a bit of charm, just doesn't stand that high as a fairy tale film.

The Female Vampire - This is even more directly pornographic than a lot of similar vampire films and it helps that it's Lina Romay. It could have used a tighter edit (but the alternate "horror" version of the film is much shorter, I only watched parts of that, it has bloody biting that isn't in the main version), perhaps more could have been made of the setting and some of the sex music spoils an otherwise nice elegiac tone. Similar to Rollin's Iron Rose, a lot of the otherworldly stuff is conveyed through the dialogue. I think I like this most of the small handful of Franco films I know.

I saw Succubus a while ago and it was by far my least favorite, with all that lazy lounge party stuff I hate from this era. Sort of reminds me of Spring Breakers (I don't expect anyone to come with me on this), I could almost hear James Franco whispering "spring break...spring break..."

Robert Adam Gilmour, Tuesday, 11 December 2018 17:39 (two months ago) Permalink

A film Old Lunch mentioned above that I'm very excited about coming on UK bluray: White Reindeer

Robert Adam Gilmour, Sunday, 23 December 2018 21:22 (one month ago) Permalink

joe bob briggs did a phantasm marathon for his holiday special on shudder and it is a delightful way to watch those movies, whether for the first or thousandth time

they’re also all masterpieces except for the last one

jolene club remix (BradNelson), Monday, 24 December 2018 16:22 (one month ago) Permalink

even/especially iii, the genre-confusion middle chapter

jolene club remix (BradNelson), Monday, 24 December 2018 16:24 (one month ago) Permalink

White Reindeer being released in the UK is the first time I've seriously considered getting a region-free player. I doubt it'll get a US release.

Loggins and Rogers and G are...K3NNY (Old Lunch), Monday, 24 December 2018 17:26 (one month ago) Permalink

been thinking about going region free for a while. there's of stuff that never comes out here from Hong Kong and Arrow Video releases in the UK

xp shiiit maybe i'll actually sub to Shudder for that

Nhex, Monday, 24 December 2018 21:07 (one month ago) Permalink

Sometimes Criterion goes for films in the Eureka Masters Of Cinema series.

I've had a multiregion dvd player since 2007 because it was an absolute necessity for a UK horror fan in the dvd era, because our selection was utter shit. But the bluray era has been very good to the UK.

I still don't have a multiregion bluray player, I've been scared by stories of software updates overwriting the region capabilities. Since there are only 3 regions now, it isn't totally outrageous to own 3 bluray players.

Robert Adam Gilmour, Friday, 28 December 2018 20:19 (one month ago) Permalink

two weeks pass...

starting to seem more and more like the exorcist iii is my favorite movie

jolene club remix (BradNelson), Sunday, 13 January 2019 05:06 (one month ago) Permalink

no movie looks or moves quite like it, except of course the ninth configuration

jolene club remix (BradNelson), Sunday, 13 January 2019 05:06 (one month ago) Permalink

god I need to watch the ninth configuration again

resident hack (Simon H.), Sunday, 13 January 2019 05:22 (one month ago) Permalink

My mom took me to see Exorcist III on my 13th birthday, so it's a sentimental favorite on top of being very good.

A Nugatory Excrescence (Old Lunch), Sunday, 13 January 2019 14:30 (one month ago) Permalink

Fun story that reifies the thread title: when I went to see Exorcist III in the theatre, someone actually shit their pants in the big jump-scare scene.

Una Palooka Dronka (hardcore dilettante), Sunday, 13 January 2019 16:30 (one month ago) Permalink

i am an inveterate Exorcist II booster yet... I have never seen III

valet doberman (Jon not Jon), Monday, 14 January 2019 16:11 (one month ago) Permalink

i love exorcist ii too of course but iii is a legit great movie (like i don't have to prepare anyone for how much of a weird messy misfire it is like ii), just very strange. it's very funny in its quieter moments which can be disarming bc the loud moments are so frightening. it's also a great sequel in that the overwhelming sadness of the first one is carried into it and deepened

jolene club remix (BradNelson), Monday, 14 January 2019 16:15 (one month ago) Permalink

also like just an all-time great scenery chewing performance from brad dourif, he's terrifying

jolene club remix (BradNelson), Monday, 14 January 2019 16:16 (one month ago) Permalink

really beautiful soulful george c. scott and ed flanders performances too

jolene club remix (BradNelson), Monday, 14 January 2019 16:18 (one month ago) Permalink


why have i not seen this yet!!!

valet doberman (Jon not Jon), Monday, 14 January 2019 16:19 (one month ago) Permalink

it's on shudder!!!!

jolene club remix (BradNelson), Monday, 14 January 2019 16:19 (one month ago) Permalink

pre-chucky dourif roles are like truffles to me

valet doberman (Jon not Jon), Monday, 14 January 2019 16:19 (one month ago) Permalink

Two solid untelegraphed jump scares is roughly two more than most horror movies can boast.

A Nugatory Excrescence (Old Lunch), Monday, 14 January 2019 16:20 (one month ago) Permalink

and i've seen it at least four or fives times now and those jump scares get me every time

jolene club remix (BradNelson), Monday, 14 January 2019 16:28 (one month ago) Permalink

Parents finally getting a new disc release in UK

Robert Adam Gilmour, Saturday, 19 January 2019 11:31 (one month ago) Permalink

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