And Now The Screaming Starts (1973 Britain)

This period horror film has all the right ingredients to be a success. It’s got atmosphere, nice sets, Peter Cushing, an experienced horror director, a severed hand with a mind of it’s own…but despite all this, it just doesn’t work as it should. One of the studio’s rare non-anthology movies, it suffers from a very uncertain script. The opening narration suggests a gothic melodrama along the lines of `Rebecca’, but it all-too quickly goes over the top. Familiar genre faces such as Patrick Magee pop up only to fall foul for a disembodied hand (a left over from the studio’s `Dr Terror’s House Of Horrors’) and the whole thing falters. [Read more…]

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Chase A Crooked Shadow (1958 UK)

chase-a-crooked-shadow-03This one’s main strength is its plot, which spins a fairly gripping early variation on the are-they aren’t-they mad? scenario which proved such a fruitful ground for British suspense films of that era. An isolated victim in peril from immediate family; lingering doubts of the identity of those closest to her; suggestions of beckoning insanity, overtones of incestuousness, obligatory last minute revelations, and so on. This is memorable for its haunting guitar theme and superb Spanish locations looking cool in black & white. [Read more…]

Mysterious Island (1961 UK/USA)

mysterious-islandA vivid re-telling of the Jules Verne novel, with changes made necessary by the change to the medium of film. The women do not appear in the book. A love interest was necessary. Perhaps I should say a thigh interest, judging by Beth Rogan’s lack of modest dress here. [Read more…]

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