Die, Monster, Die! (1965 USA)

The original script for this adaptation of H. P. Lovecraft’s The Colour Out Of Space was so bad, written by Jerry Sohl, that the crew behind the camera could not stop giggling. At one point, actress Freida Jackson, wailed: “I can’t speak these lines. They’re unspeakable!” So director Daniel Haller had to rework the narrative mess. Despite his surgery, unintentional laughter remains. During an absurdly tense meal time scene, a servant collapses to the floor–taking the tablecloth and cutlery with him. Inspector Clouseau couldn’t have done it better.
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The Sorcerers (1967 United Kingdom)

Boris Karloff is masterful, even if he has to spend half of this film sitting helplessly on the floor. The late Michael Reeves certainly knew how to make the viewer feel uncomfortable. This is even more upsetting than his later Witchfinder General. It’s a fascinating, yet very sad, snapshot of urban British working class life in 1967. It’s amazing how things seemed more unclean then, how depressingly dirty and squalid the back streets of “swinging London” could really be like. Everything about The Sorcerers is grubby. While the dvd is playing I feel like I’m there. In The Glory Hole. (Don’t laugh – you’ll need to see this movie to know I’m not being rude. The GH is an integral part of the plot) It’s all very mentally disconcerting. [Read more…]

The Raven (1963 USA)

raven02An absurd adventure – styled comedy. The plot is thinner than a supermodel’s waistline and even at 85 minutes it outstays its welcome. But I will be kind. Edgar Allen Poe may have turned in his grave, but the rest of us get to have fun as we see horror gods Vincent Price, Boris Karloff and Peter Lorre, not to mention Jack Nicholson ham it up in style as the weird and wonderful cast of this very silly story of wizards and hocus pocus. [Read more…]

I tre volti della paura (1963 Italy)

bk 1963You can’t speak Italian? Neither can I, so “Black Sabbath” it is. 1945’s Dead of Night introduced horror cinema to omnibus films, and Black Sabbath brought it back! Italian produced films were making a lot of money in the early 1960s and former cinematographer / horror genius Mario Bava was brought in to direct this compendium of horror tales. [Read more…]

Targets (1968 United States)

targetsSixties America. Small town. Nothing ever happens. Go to work. Watch TV. Go to a Drive-in. Eat dinner with your family. This is the life portrayed in Targets, a very low budget flick. However, there is something not quite right. We’re never really too sure what it is but there’s something that is disturbed. We may have a terrorist in our midst… [Read more…]

CURSE OF THE CRIMSON ALTAR (1968 Britain)

Curse_of_the_crimson_altar_posterAh 1968, the year that keeps turning up all over these film reviews. The year quite a lot happened actually. Although this is strictly a B movie in terms of quality, it is one of the most colourfully entertaining products that came out of England from that era. Images from this motion picture keep turning up in those books written by Jonathan Rigby and David Pirie. [Read more…]

THE PURPLE ROOM (Thriller 1960)

thriltitleOne of the more interesting episodes from the Thriller TV series. They are worth watching just for those great Boris Karloff introductions before each story. A lawyer informs a cynical man named Duncan (a straight-talking Rip Torn) that he has just inherited an old house in Louisiana, and it is haunted. [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…]

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