THE OMEGA MAN (1971 USA)

the_Omega_Man_02What we have right here is a prime sampling of Charlton Heston’s 1970s renaissance.The man. In all his ageing, fading glory. The Omega Man is his best flick,  even surpassing “Planet of the Apes”. No one can do a last-martyr-on-earth number like Chuck. But Heston is also a ham. People tend to either love him or hate him. [Read more…]

THE SATANIC RITES OF DRACULA (1973 Britain)

4j9yflMark my words, “The Satanic Rites of Dracula” is indeed a very silly film, but vampire movies are silly in the first place so why not go for broke? Hammer Films were at the end of their rope by 1973 and knew it, so they mixed vampire hijinks with spy movie intrigue, then cast Dracula as the megalomaniac villain named D D Denham. [Read more…]

VIVA MARIA! (France/Italy 1965)

2965697145_1_13_xJr3oxcGIn her native France, Brigitte Bardot enjoyed a similar reputation to that enjoyed by, say, Elizabeth Taylor in the Anglo-Saxon world; a great screen actress who also happened to be a great beauty. In the English-speaking world Bardot’s reputation was rather different, more that of a great beauty, idolized by millions of men who had never seen any of her films. [Read more…]

THE KIDS ARE ALRIGHT (1979 USA)

the whoWhatever the hell it is the Who play, it isn’t rock. It’s not. The musical tapestry spanned in Pete Townshend’s song writing is far too broad and varied to pigeonhole it with a genre label. His father played the music of his time. Townshend himself fell in love with the R&B singles that made their way to Britain from America. [Read more…]

THE HAUNTING OF HILL HOUSE (Shirley Jackson)

hhh3A bit about Miss Jackson might be in order, as the woman accurately reflected her writings. Jackson wrote “The Lottery,” the most controversial story ever published by The New Yorker Magazine. She was married to a teacher and had four children. Jackson was a devoted mother, interested in magic and witchcraft, and by all accounts a delightful hostess and witty conversationalist. [Read more…]

THE BEAST MUST DIE (Britain 1974)

beast_must_die_poster_spanishI have a limited amount of internet access now so here’s another review. The Beast Must Die is an unusual film in more ways than one. The studio who made it – Amicus – were well-known almost solely for their portmanteau movies, i.e. a selection of short horror stories connected by a spooky framing narrative. The Beast Must Die is not one of those types of films, instead its story encompasses a full length feature. [Read more…]

ANCIENT IMAGES (Ramsey Campbell)

ancientThe set up for this tale is excellent: a long-lost horror film starring Bela Lugosi and Boris Karloff surfaces only to be censored by people and forces desperate for it to remain forgotten. Why? And to what lengths will they go to keep it quiet? [Read more…]

THE SHINING (1980 UK/USA)

28FCA14400000578-3093033-image-m-70_1432739012325Stanley Kubrick’s cinema is, usually, a sight to behold. The cold detachment his films are famous for works really well for this particular story. Who needs much fancy dialogue anyway? We get the adventurous camera that prowls through the lavish corridors of the Overlook Hotel like it is some kind of mystic labyrinth rife for exploration. [Read more…]

BEAUTY ( A Ramble)

5413625317_c2796a7564_mThere is a powerful connection between beauty and healing … But I don’t think it is immediately obvious. I think about what beauty can do in our lives. First, it can open us up to our sense of immortality and our sense of eternity. [Read more…]

HAUNTED (James Herbert)

the-secret-of-crickley-hall-by-james-herber‘Haunted’ is another of James Herbert’s more ‘concise’ thrillers, along the lines of ‘The Rats’ and ‘The Magic Cottage’. Despite its relative directness, the action tends to drag in places for the first two-thirds of the book. [Read more…]

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