Theatre of Death (also known as Blood Fiend) is a 1967 British horror movie directed by Samuel Gallu and starring Christopher Lee as a theatre director whose Grand Guignol theatre is thought to be linked to a series of murders. The Theatre of Death in Paris specialises in horror presentations. A police surgeon finds himself becoming involved in the place through his attraction to one of the performers. When bloodless bodies start showing up all over town he realises there could be links with the theatre. In Paris a series of grisly murders are taking place, in which the victims are stabbed with a knife that leaves a triangular wound and then are drained of their blood. Inspector Micheaud (IVOR DEAN) and pathologist Charles Marquis (JULIAN GLOVER) suspect that they are dealing with a killer with vampiristic tendencies. Marquis has a girlfriend called Dani Gireaux (LELIA GOLDONI) who is an actress at the "Theatre De Mort" - the "Theatre Of Death" where the principal themes of the plays are murder and mayhem. The company is run by the eccentric and obsessive Philippe Darvas (CHRISTOPHER LEE) who becomes the chief suspect because when Marquis gives him a lift home and tells him that a knife that resembles the murder weapon was found among his props, he seemed eager to get out of the car and continue on foot. Secondly, he seems to have hypnotic control over one of his fellow actresses, Nicole Chapelle (JENNY TILL). Things look worse for Darvas after he disappears late one night leaving his hat and blood soaked cloak in a park, but Nicole's trance doesn't appear to be letting up. Meanwhile, the death toll continues to rise and the police must either find Darvas' killer or the true culprit. THEATRE OF DEATH begins slowly and tamely (in every murder sequence the camera moves in for a close up of the victim's terrified face then cuts away to the next scene). However, it cannot be denied that this is a unique film in its own right as it features one of Christopher Lee's best performances and it deals with an ingenious modern day vampire story, which is far more realistic than the mythical vampires that Hammer dealt with. The film pulls every hokey horror trick in the book such as eyes moving in portraits and the French characters speak with impeccable English accents very much as the Transylvanians did in the Hammer films. However, what makes the film unique is that it packs an ingenious twist at the climax and as a result the film has given us these hackneyed horror clichés before throwing them to the winds and when the identity of the killer is finally revealed it comes as quite a surprise as every one is expecting it to be Christopher Lee's character as this is a part that everyone associated with him at the time. Its not him but I won't spoil it any more for those who have not seen it! Add to that, all the performances are excellent and there is the stylish camera-work of Gilbert Taylor who would later go on to shoot the first STAR WARS (1977) for George Lucas.
Quatermass and the Pit (titled Five Million Years to Earth in the United States) is a 1967 British science fiction horror film, a sequel to the earlier films The Quatermass Xperiment and Quatermass 2. Like its predecessors, it is based on a BBC Television serial Quatermass and the Pit, written by Nigel Kneale. It was directed by Roy Ward Baker and stars Andrew Keir in the title role as Professor Bernard Quatermass, replacing Brian Donlevy who played the role in the two earlier films. James Donald, Barbara Shelley and Julian Glover appear in co-starring roles. The storyline, which is largely faithful to the original television production, centres on the discovery of a mysterious object buried at the site of an extension to the London Underground. Also uncovered nearby are the remains of early human ancestors more than five million years old. Realising that the object is in fact an ancient Martian spacecraft, Quatermass deduces that the aliens have influenced human evolution and the development of human intelligence. The spacecraft has an intelligence of its own, and once uncovered begins to exert a malign influence, resurrecting Martian memories and instincts buried deep within the human psyche. Professor Bernard Quatermass was first introduced to audiences in two BBC television serials, The Quatermass Experiment (1953) and Quatermass II (1955), written by Nigel Kneale. Workers building an extension to the London Underground at Hobbs End dig up skeletal remains. Palaeontologist Dr Matthew Roney (James Donald) is called in and deduces that they are the remnants of a group of five-million-year-old apemen, more ancient than any previous finds. One of Roney's assistants uncovers part of a metallic object. Believing it to be an unexploded bomb, they call in an army bomb disposal team. Meanwhile, Professor Bernard Quatermass (Andrew Keir) is dismayed to learn that his plans for the colonisation of the Moon are to be taken over by the military. He gives a cold reception to Colonel Breen (Julian Glover), who has been assigned to join Quatermass's British Experimental Rocket Group. When the bomb disposal team call for Breen's assistance, Quatermass accompanies him to the site. Breen concludes it is a V-weapon, but Quatermass disagrees. When another skeleton is found in an inner chamber, Quatermass and Roney realise that the object must also be five million years old. Quatermass suspects it is of alien origin, but Roney is certain the apemen are terrestrial.
*The copy of this film includes english subtitles, unfortunately it is such a rare film this was the only copy available to this channel* Isle of the Dead is a 1945 horror film directed by Mark Robson and made for RKO Radio Pictures by producer Val Lewton. The film's script was inspired by the painting Isle of the Dead by Arnold Böcklin, which appears behind the title credits, though the film was originally titled Camilla during production. It was written by frequent Lewton collaborator Ardel Wray. It starred Boris Karloff. Isle of the Dead was the second of three films Lewton made with Karloff, and the fourth of five pictures Robson directed for Lewton. Cast: Boris Karloff as Gen. Nikolas Pherides, Ellen Drew as Thea, Marc Cramer as Oliver Davis, Katherine Emery as Mrs. Mary St. Aubyn, Helene Thimig as Madame Kyra, Alan Napier as St. Aubyn, Jason Robards Sr. as Albrecht, Ernst Deutsch as Dr. Drossos, Sherry Hall as Col. Kobestes, Erick Hanson as Officer, Skelton Knaggs as Andrew Robbins. Filming began for about two weeks in July 1944 until production was suspended when Karloff required a back operation. It was completed in December 1944. In the interim, after Karloff had recovered from the surgery but before the cast of Isle of the Dead could be reassembled, he and Lewton made The Body Snatcher. The film had a troubled production, and the central female character of the original script (named "Catherine") was deleted entirely from the tale. Score: Leigh Harline's somber score makes use of another work inspired by Böcklin's painting, Sergei Rachmaninoff's tone poem, "Isle of the Dead". Harline borrows themes and copies their orchestration, without violating copyright. He made no use of the public-domain "Dies Irae". The film premiered in New York City on 7 September 1945. The cost of Isle of the Dead at completion was $246,000, the highest yet for a Lewton horror film, but with domestic rentals of $266,000, and foreign rentals of $117,000, it made only $13,000 in profit for RKO. It was re-issued in 1953 on a double bill with Mighty Joe Young, and made its television debut in 1959. An onscreen text warns of the superstitious belief in a vorvolaka, a malevolent force in human form. The film proper begins during the Balkan Wars of 1912. While his troops are burying their dead.
The Ghost Ship is a 1943 American black-and-white psychological thriller film, with elements of mystery and horror, directed by Mark Robson, starring Richard Dix and featuring Russell Wade, Edith Barrett, Ben Bard and Edmund Glover, along with Skelton Knaggs. It was produced by Val Lewton for RKO Radio Pictures as part of a series of horror films. The film can be seen as a "low-key psychological thriller", a "suspense drama." The film is about a young merchant marine officer who begins to suspect that his ship's captain is mentally unbalanced and endangering the lives of the ship's crew. The ship's crew, however, believes the vessel to be haunted and cursed and several mysterious deaths occur. Upon its theatrical release on Christmas Eve, 1943, the film was a box office success but received a mixed critical reception. However, in February 1944, Lewton was sued for plagiarism by playwrights Samuel R. Golding and Norbert Faulkner, who claimed that the script was based on a play that was submitted to Lewton for a possible film. Because of the suit, The Ghost Ship was withdrawn from theatrical release and not shown for nearly 50 years. Production began on 3 August 1943. Many details about the performances, lighting, camera angles, action, and effects were worked out ahead of time in order to not only keep the film under budget but also help achieve suspense on such a low budget. Dr. Jared Criswell, former pastor of the Fifth Avenue Spiritualist Church of New York City, served as a technical consultant on the film regarding psychic phenomena. The picture's final fight scene between the Finn, Pollo, and the mad Captain was shot on a dimly lit set to heighten the suspense and keep the audience from guessing who the victor might be, similar to the way Jacques Tourneur and Lewton had shot a similar scene in Cat People.
I Walked with a Zombie is a 1943 horror film directed by Jacques Tourneur. It was the second horror film from producer Val Lewton for RKO Pictures. Producer Val Lewton was forced to use the film's title by RKO executives. Starring: James Ellison, Frances Dee, Tom Conway. Officially, the film was based on an article written by Inez Wallace for American Weekly Magazine. Lewton asked his writers to use Charlotte Brontë's Jane Eyre for giving the story a narrative structure and to do research on Haitian voodoo practices. Anna Lee was originally slated for the Frances Dee role, but had to bow out due to another commitment. While I Walked with a Zombie was declared to be "a dull, disgusting exaggeration of an unhealthy, abnormal concept of life" by The New York Times in 1943, critics later called it "intelligent" (William K. Everson), "exceptional" (Leonard Maltin) and "the most elegant" in Lewton's RKO horror series (Tom Milne). The film's treatment of the supernatural element repeatedly attracted interest among reviewers: "As with all of Val Lewton’s films, I Walked with a Zombie hovers on the deliberate edge of ambiguity between whether the explanation for events is mundane or supernatural. The central belief/doubt ambiguity of the film hovers around the question of whether Jessica is suffering from tropical fever or has been affected by voodoo. The film sits just between rationalism and superstition – its duality plays on the conflict between Western Christendom and Caribbean culture, and between medicine and magic." – Richard Scheib "In [I Walked with a Zombie] belief in the supernatural is but one of many faults in the human character. The script never confirms the reality of Voodoo even when it is clear that the Voodoo masters are controlling the zombie Carre-Four. It's worth noting that Wesley 'falls under the voodoo spell' only after despairing of the hopeless state of affairs at the Hammond house, and sinking into a deep depression. Lewton's theme is that human nature creates Evil – that unresolved guilt and suspicions from the past dominate the Hammond family's present. Better natures are stifled, starting a chain of human misery that leads to tragedy. The result – wasted lives and blighted vitality – is as pervasive as the creeping Voodoo beliefs themselves. " – Glenn Erickson In 2007, Stylus Magazine named it the fifth best zombie movie of all time. Books: The film is referenced in Thomas Pynchon's novel Inherent Vice. The film is referenced in the novel The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt. The film's plot is recounted by the main characters in the novel Kiss of the Spider Woman by Manuel Puig. Music: Singer-songwriter Roky Erickson wrote a song titled "I Walked with a Zombie", which appeared on his 1981 album The Evil One. Since then, the bands R.E.M., The Vietnam Veterans, U.K. Subs, Turbonegro, Alice Donut, The Visitors, Električni Orgazam, The New Orleans Radiators and Elf Power have covered this song. In 1997, the punk band Link 80 used an image from the movie for their cover of their second album Killing Katie. Wednesday 13's album Transylvania 90210: Songs of Death, Dying, and the Dead (2005) contains the track "I Walked With A Zombie", inspired by this film. Dance collective Transglobal Underground sampled some of the voodoo chanting from the soundtrack of I Walked with a Zombie for the track "Zombie'ites" from their 1993 album Dream of 100 Nations. Television: In the season 1 episode of Pretty Little Liars, 'Please, Do Talk About Me When I'm Gone', the characters of Emily and Maya go to see the film and shots from the film are used in the episode. The film is referenced in the season 8 episode of Archer, 'Archer Dreamland: Sleepers Wake'. Film: Pedro Costa has suggested that his original intention for his 1994 film Casa de Lava was to remake I Walked With a Zombie. It tells the story of a nurse (Inês de Medeiros) returning a comatose patient (Isaach De Bankolé) to his homeland of Cape Verde. Ritual is an authorized remake of I Walked With a Zombie, coproduced by RKO.
The Leopard Man is a 1943 horror film Produced by Val Lewton, *tribute link here* https://web.archive.org/web/20081121004139/http://www.lewtonsite.com/ directed by Jacques Tourneur based on the book Black Alibi by Cornell Woolrich. It is one of the first American films to attempt an even remotely realistic portrayal of a serial killer (although that term was yet to be used). Cast: Dennis O'Keefe as Jerry Manning, Margo as Clo-Clo, Jean Brooks as Kiki Walker, Isabel Jewell as Maria,The Fortune Teller, Marguerite Sylva as Marta, Abner Biberman as Charlie. The film was made on a budget of $150,000. The same black leopard (named "Dynamite") used in Cat People, another Val Lewton-produced film, was brought back for this film. Although at least one preview trailer for the film suggests the possibility of a killer "half-man half-leopard", everything in the film itself implies the killer is leopard or a man simulating leopard attacks. The possibility of a man-beast hybrid is never raised in the film itself, only in the trailer. TV Guide awarded the film three out of four stars, writing, "this film, along with Lewton and Tourneur's other collaborations, proves once again that money is not the most essential element in good filmmaking. Robert de Grasse's gorgeously fluid camerawork creates the absolutely chilling mood of this film." The story, set in New Mexico, begins as Jerry Manning (Dennis O'Keefe) hires a leopard as a publicity stunt for his night-club performing girlfriend, Kiki (Jean Brooks). Her rival at the club, Clo-Clo (Margo), not wanting to be upstaged, startles the animal and it escapes the club into the dark night. The owner of the leopard, a solo sideshow performer named Charlie How-Come—billed as "The Leopard Man"—begins pestering Manning for money for replacement of the leopard. Soon a girl is found mauled to death, and Manning and Kiki feel remorse for having unleashed the monster.
Cat People is a 1942 horror film produced by Val Lewton and directed by Jacques Tourneur. DeWitt Bodeen wrote the original screenplay, which was based on Val Lewton's short story The Bagheeta, published in 1930. The film stars Simone Simon, Kent Smith, Jane Randolph and Tom Conway. In 1993, the film was selected for preservation in the United States National Film Registry by the Library of Congress as being "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant". Cat People tells the story of a young Serbian woman, Irena, who believes herself to be a descendant of a race of people who turn into cats when sexually aroused or deeply angered. Cat People was the first production for producer Val Lewton, who was a journalist, novelist and poet turned story editor for David O. Selznick. RKO hired Lewton to make horror films on a budget of under $150,000 to titles provided by the studio. The film was shot from July 28 to August 21, 1942, at RKO's Gower Gulch studios in Hollywood. Sets left over from previous, higher-budgeted RKO productions—notably the staircase from The Magnificent Ambersons—were utilized. Costing $141,659 ($7,000 under budget), it brought in almost $4 million in its first two years and saved the studio from financial disaster. Near the end of the filming of Cat People, two crews were working to finish the picture on time, one at night, filming the animals, and one during the day with the cast. Cat People was the first collaboration of director Tourneur with cinematographer Nicholas Musuraca. Their later collaboration on RKO's Out of the Past (1947) would again be regarded as seminal for its genre, in this case the film noir. Lewton and his production are credited for inventing or popularising the horror film technique called the 'Lewton Bus'. The term derives from the scene in which Irena is following Alice. The audience expects Irena to turn into a panther at any moment and attack. At the most tense point, when the camera focuses on Alice's confused and terrified face, the silence is shattered by what sounds like a hissing panther—but is just a bus pulling up. This technique has been used many times since. Any scene in which tension is dissipated by a mere moment of startlement, a boo!, is a 'Lewton bus'. Much has been said of Lewton and Tourneur's use of shadows in lieu of an actual monster in the film. This is very much in contrast to competing horror films being produced by Universal at the time. J. P. Tollette in his book Dreams of Darkness: Fantasy and the Films of Val Lewton speaks to the meaning of the extensive use of shadows in the film: "While engaging our imaginative participation, the absence marked by those dark patches speaks of a fundamental – and disturbing – relationship between man and his world: it signals a black hole or vacant meaning in the physical realm which, in spite of man's natural desire to fill it with consciousness and significance, persistently and troublingly remains open." Lewton accepted the assignment of producing a follow-up film called The Curse of the Cat People, *link here* https://www.bitchute.com/video/euRVH5MzY2CT/ which was also written by DeWitt Bodeen and released in 1944. This follow-up film retained Kent Smith and Jane Randolph's characters, and showed Simone Simon either as a ghost or else as the imaginary friend of the couple's young daughter. A remake of the first film directed by Paul Schrader and starring Nastassja Kinski, Malcolm McDowell, John Heard and Annette O'Toole was released in 1982. Another Lewton/Bodeen film, The Seventh Victim, *link here* https://www.bitchute.com/video/8SVsDqAJcHqi/ was produced in 1943, and features Tom Conway as New York City psychiatrist Dr. Louis Judd. In The Seventh Victim, Judd recounts to a poet that he once knew a mysterious woman who was in fact a "raving lunatic" (thought to be a reference to Irena Dubrovna), even though Judd's character died in Cat People, making the relationship between the two fictional narratives incoherent. In memos and early drafts of the script, Conway's character was referred to as "Mr. Siegfried"; film scholars believe that the character's name was changed to create continuity between the two films in order to capitalize on Cat People's success.
The Curse of the Cat People is a 1944 film sequel to Cat People 1942, *link here* https://www.bitchute.com/video/REclsc5oGoUC/ it was directed by Gunther von Fritsch and Robert Wise, and produced by Val Lewton. This film, which was then-film editor Robert Wise's first directing credit, is the sequel to Cat People (1942) and has many of the same characters. However, the movie has a completely different story, and no visible cat people, only the ghost of a character established as a cat-person in the previous film. The screenplay was again written by DeWitt Bodeen. The Curse of the Cat People, which began production at the RKO Gower Street studios in Hollywood on 26 August 1943 and stopped on 4 October of that year, with additional shooting in the week of 21 November, marked two directorial debuts. Gunther von Fritsch had only directed short subjects to that time, so the film marked his feature debut, but when he fell behind schedule, having gotten only halfway through the screenplay in the 18 days of filming that had been allocated, the studio assigned film editor Robert Wise to take over, which earned him his first directorial credit. When it wrapped, the film, which had done some location shooting at Malibu Lake, California, was nine days behind schedule, and had cost so much that its budget was raised from $147,000 to $212,000. As was usual with Lewton's films, the tight budget demanded the re-use of sets, here from Orson Welles' The Magnificent Ambersons (1942), as had already been done with the predecessor Cat People. Although sharing some of the same cast and characters and marketed as a sequel to 1942's Cat People, this film has little relationship to the earlier one. RKO studio executives wanted to cash in on the success of the first film, and insisted on keeping the title, despite producer Val Lewton's desire to change it to Amy and Her Friend. Lewton had put a lot of himself into the film, integrating into the story autobiographical details from his childhood, such as the party invitations that are "mailed" by putting them into a hollow tree. Lewton grew up not far from Tarrytown, where the story is set, and was fond of ghost stories such as "The Headless Horseman" (Washington Irving's "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow") which is cited in The Curse of the Cat People. Studio executives were disappointed when Lewton screened his final cut for them, and insisted on some additional scenes, such as the one of the boys chasing a black cat, being filmed and inserted into the picture. At the same time, some details which were crucial to the plot were lost in the re-editing necessary to accommodate the new scenes
The Seventh Victim is a 1943 American horror film noir directed by Mark Robson and starring Tom Conway, Jean Brooks, Isabel Jewell, Kim Hunter, and Hugh Beaumont. Written by DeWitt Bodeen and Charles O'Neal, and produced by Val Lewton for RKO Radio Pictures, the film focuses on a young woman who stumbles on an underground cult of devil worshippers in Greenwich Village, New York City, while searching for her missing sister. It marks Robson's directorial debut and was Hunter's first onscreen role. O'Neal had written the script as a murder mystery, set in California, that followed a woman hunted by a serial killer. Bodeen revised the script, basing the story on a Satanic society he had encountered in New York City. Filming took place over 24 days in May 1943 at RKO Studios in Los Angeles. Released on August 21, 1943, the film failed to garner significant income at the box office and received mixed reviews from critics, who found its narrative incoherence a primary fault. It was later revealed that Robson and an editor, John Lockert, had removed four substantial scenes from the final cut, including an extended conclusion. In spite of its mixed reception, the film became a cult film in England, noted by critics for its homoerotic undertones. The script for The Seventh Victim went through several incarnations in the pre-production process. One version focused on an orphan caught in a murder plot amid California's Signal Hill oil wells; in this narrative, the heroine needed to solve the orphan's identity, saving him from becoming the seventh victim of the unknown killer. This version of the script was re-written entirely by DeWitt Bodeen under the supervision of producer Val Lewton. The new plot followed a young woman who uncovers a cult of Satanists in Greenwich Village. Bodeen purportedly based his idea for the film on a real Satanic society he had encountered in New York. The script incorporated other elements of his experiences in New York: Jacqueline's cosmetics business, La Sagesse, was inspired by his previous work as a journalist reporting on cosmetic companies, and the Italian restaurant, Dante's, was based on Barbetta, a restaurant in Manhattan's Theater District. Mark Robson, a Canadian editor who had worked as an assistant on Citizen Kane, was signed to direct the film, his directorial debut. It was shot over 24 days at RKO's Gower Street studio in Los Angeles, California, beginning on May 5, 1943, and concluding on May 29. The opening scene at the boarding school used the set featured in RKO's The Magnificent Ambersons, released the year before. The film is loosely connected to Cat People (1942) by the appearance of Tom Conway as Dr. Louis Judd, who had roles in both films. Judd recounts to a poet that he once knew a mysterious woman who was in fact a "raving lunatic" (referencing Irena Dubrovna, the protagonist of Cat People *link here* https://www.bitchute.com/video/REclsc5oGoUC/ ). In memos and early drafts of the script, Conway's character was referred to as "Mr. Siegfried"; film scholars believe that the character's name was changed to provide continuity between the two films and to capitalize on Cat People's success. The Judd character, however, had died in Cat People, calling into question the relation of the two fictional narratives. Val Lewton historian Edmund Bansak notes that the films are also linked thematically through a preoccupation with nihilism. Most controversially, the film resolves with the suicide of one of the main characters (contrary to the spirit if not the letter of the Production Code). Film historian Steve Haberman, in his audio commentary of the film, characterized Jacqueline as the film's philosophical center, noting her existentialist views: "Her life is the very nightmare version of life that Val Lewton portrays in many of his movies: a meaningless existence, trying to find meaning, always failing and in the end seeking a sort of peace through death." Film scholar J.P. Telotte echoed this sentiment, stating: "The Seventh Victim explores certain ineffable fears that always haunt the human psyche, especially a fear of meaninglessness or the irrational which can make death seem almost a welcome release from life."
The Picture of Dorian Gray is a 1945 American horror-drama film based on Oscar Wilde's 1890 novel of the same name. Released in March 1945, the film is directed by Albert Lewin and stars George Sanders as Lord Henry Wotton and Hurd Hatfield as Dorian Gray. Shot primarily in black-and-white, the film features four colour inserts in 3-strip Technicolor of Dorian's portrait; these are a special effect, the first two inserts are the original portrait and the second two after a major period of degeneration then recovery. You may recognize a very young Angela Lansbury in this film as singer Sibyl Vane, Dorian's love interest. It was her third film at age 20 years. It is London, 1886. Dorian Gray (Hurd Hatfield) is a handsome and wealthy young man. While generally intelligent, he is naive and easily manipulated. These faults lead to his spiral into sin and ultimate misery. While posing for a painting by his friend Basil Hallward (Lowell Gilmore), Gray meets Hallward's friend Lord Henry Wotton (George Sanders). The cynical but witty Wotton persuades Gray the only worthwhile life is dedicated to pleasure, because "what the gods give they quickly take away." After Wotton convinces Gray that youth and beauty will bring him everything he desires, Dorian wishes his portrait could age instead of him. He makes the wish openly in the presence of an Egyptian cat statue with supposed mystical powers to grant wishes. The painting entitled Picture of Dorian Gray used in the film was painted on commission during the making of the film in 1943-1944 by Ivan Le Lorraine Albright, an American artist who was well known as a painter of the macabre. Created specifically for use in the film, it is now part of the art collection of The Art Institute of Chicago. Albright had to paint the picture while the movie was being made in order to show Dorian Gray's physical transformation as his evil actions changed him into a horrid image in the painting, while his actual physical appearance remained that of a young man. At the film's climax, Gray "killed" the painting by piercing it through its heart with a knife, thus killing himself when his physical appearance changed to that of the painting. The original portrait of Dorian Gray seen in the beginning of the film was painted by Henrique Medina. It was originally sold at the legendary MGM auction in 1970 when the contents of the studio were sold at a series of auctions lasting several months. It was then sold in a Butterfield and Butterfield Entertainment Memorabilia auction in 1997 for $17,250, and in 2015 it was sold at Christie's, New York for $149,000 and is believed to be in a private collection.
The Soul Of A Monster is a 1944 horror film Directed by Will Jason, Writing Credits Edward Dein, Cast (in credits order) Rose Hobart, George Macready, Jim Bannon, Jeanne Bates, Erik Rolf, Ernest Hilliard. As famous surgeon, George Winson, lies on his deathbed, his wife Ann calls on unknown powers to save him. A strange woman (Lilyan) appears from nowhere and takes control. George recovers, but he's mysteriously dominated by Lilyan, and leaves his wife. When the evil woman tempts him into letting his best friend (Roger) die Wilson realizes that Lilyan wants his soul in exchange for the chance to continue living. If I hadn't seen the opening credits, I would have sworn this was a Val Lewton classic. It has all the fascinating earmarks as well as much of the weirdness. The story is simple enough. A doctor about to die is saved by an evil spirit in the guise of a mysterious woman, but as we know, there is always a price to pay for undeserved immortality.
The Flying Serpent is a 1946 American fantasy-horror film based on a story by John T Neville. It follows the deranged archaeologist, Dr Andrew Forbes, as he uses his discovery of a killer bird god, the mythical Quetzalcoatl, to murder his enemies. The film is directed by Sam Newfield and features George Zucco, Ralph Lewis, Hope Kramer and Eddie Acuff. It was telecast to WCBS in New York on Saturday the 5th of February 1949. The film is also known as Killer with Wings (American recut version). The opening sequence features an introductory text in the form of a scroll which reads: "Near the little city of San Juan, New Mexico, stand the Aztec ruins. Archeologists tell us they are the remains of a once great temple, abandoned by the Aztecs when they migrated south to the Valley of Mexico, where they founded a rich empire. To defeat the greed of Cortez and his Spanish adventurers who had inaugurated a campaign of loot and murder, the wiley Emperor Montezuma hid his fabulous treasure far to the north and implored his native gods to guard it. Among these gods was the feathered serpent---Quetzalcoatl."
The first scene shows Dr Forbes (George Zucco) driving to the cave in which Quetzalcoatl lives. Here he taunts the serpent and, in doing so, explains that Quetzalcoatl has guarded Montezuma's treasure for 300 years. The creature has been imprisoned behind bars by Dr Forbes; it is revealed that this has been the case for 5 years. Forbes takes a feather from Quetzalcoatl and antagonises the beast, remarking that it will kill to to have its feather back.
The Lodger is a 1944 horror film about Jack the Ripper, based on the novel of the same name by Marie Belloc Lowndes. It stars Merle Oberon, George Sanders and Laird Cregar, features Sir Cedric Hardwicke and was directed by John Brahm from a screenplay by Barré Lyndon. Lowndes' story had previously been filmed in 1927 as a silent film, The Lodger: A Story of the London Fog, directed by Alfred Hitchcock, and with sound in 1932 as The Lodger. It was remade again in 1953 as Man in the Attic, starring Jack Palance and again in 2009 by David Ondaatje. Slade, a serial killer, is a lodger in a 19th-century family's London home. So is a singer, Kitty Langley, who definitely has caught Slade's eye. Women are being brutally killed in the Whitechapel district. Scotland Yard is investigating and a detective, John Warwick, begins to cast his suspicions in Slade's direction. Kitty, meanwhile, has also developed an attraction to Slade. Slade goes to see her perform at a cabaret. He goes backstage afterward and tries to make her his next victim, but Warwick's men get there just in time. Unwilling to be taken into police custody, Slade flees to the riverbank and leaps to his death. The New York Times gave the film a positive review, "If The Lodger was designed to chill the spine—as indeed it must have been, considering all the mayhem Mr. Cregar is called upon to commit as the mysterious, psychopathic pathologist of the title—then something is wrong with the picture. But, if it was intended as a sly travesty on the melodramatic technique of ponderously piling suspicion upon suspicion (and wrapping the whole in a cloak of brooding photographic effects), then The Lodger is eminently successful." Variety wrote, "With a pat cast, keen direction and tight scripting, 20th-Fox has an absorbing and, at times, spine-tingling drama". TV Guide rated it 4/5 stars and wrote, "Cregar is absolutely chilling in this Jack the Ripper tale, perhaps the best film made about Bloody Jack."
It Came from Outer Space is a 1953 American black-and-white science fiction horror film. It was produced by William Alland, directed by Jack Arnold, and stars Richard Carlson, Barbara Rush, and Charles Drake. The film's script is based on Ray Bradbury's original story treatment (not, as sometimes claimed, a published short story) "The Meteor." It Came from Outer Space tells the story of an astronomer and his fiancée who are stargazing in the desert when a large fiery object crashes to Earth. At the crash site, he discovers a round alien spaceship just before it is completely buried by an overhead landslide. When he tells this story to the local sheriff and newspaper, he is branded a crackpot. Before long, strange things begin to happen, and the tide of disbelief turns hostile. The screenplay by Harry Essex, with input by Jack Arnold, was derived from an original and lengthy screen treatment by Ray Bradbury; screen legend says that Bradbury wrote the screenplay and Harry Essex merely changed the dialogue and took the credit. Unusual among science fiction films of the era, the alien "invaders" were portrayed by Bradbury as creatures stranded on Earth and without malicious intent toward humanity. The film can be interpreted as a metaphorical refutation of the supposedly xenophobic attitudes and ideology of the Cold War. Bradbury said "I wanted to treat the invaders as beings who were not dangerous, and that was very unusual". He offered two story outlines to the studio, one with malicious aliens, the other with benign aliens. "The studio picked the right concept, and I stayed on". In 2004 Bradbury published in one volume all four versions of his screen treatment for It Came From Outer Space. Filming took place on location in and around the California towns of Palmdale, Victorville, and the Mojave Desert. The film's uncredited music score was composed by Irving Gertz, Henry Mancini, and Herman Stein. It Came from Outer Space was released in June 1953; by the end of the year it had accrued US$1.6 million in distributors' US and Canadian rentals, making it the year's 75th biggest earner. Barbara Rush won the Golden Globe award in 1954 as most promising female newcomer for her role in the film. The film was nominated for AFI's Top 10 Science Fiction Films list.
Them! is a 1954 American black-and-white science fiction monster film, produced by David Weisbart, directed by Gordon Douglas, and starring James Whitmore, Edmund Gwenn, Joan Weldon and James Arness. The film is based on an original story treatment by George Worthing Yates, which was then developed into a screenplay by Ted Sherdeman and Russell Hughes. Them! is one of the first of the 1950s "nuclear monster" films, and the first "big bug" feature. A nest of gigantic irradiated ants is discovered in the New Mexico desert; they quickly become a national threat when it is discovered that two young queen ants and their consorts have escaped to establish new nests. The national search that follows finally culminates in a battle with Them in the concrete spillways and sewers of Los Angeles. Leonard Nimoy has a small, uncredited part as a U.S. Army Staff Sergeant in the communications room. Other actors who appear in small parts include John Beradino, Willis Bouchey, Booth Colman, Richard Deacon, Lawrence Dobkin, Ann Doran, William Schallert, Douglas Spencer, Dub Taylor, Dorothy Green and Harry Wilson. When casting his planned Davy Crockett episode of the Disneyland television series, Walt Disney viewed the film to see James Arness, who had been recommended for the role. However, Disney was more impressed by a scene with Fess Parker as an inmate in a mental ward of the Texas hospital. Watching Parker's performance, Disney realized he had found his Davy Crockett. John Wayne saw the film and, impressed with Arness' performance, recommended him for the role of Marshal Matt Dillon in the new Gunsmoke TV series, a role that Arness went on to play from 1955 to 1975. The entrance to the ants' final nest was shot along the concrete spillways of the Los Angeles River, between the First and Seventh Street Bridges, east of downtown. The depiction of the Chihuahuan Desert of southern New Mexico is actually the Mojave Desert near Palmdale, California. Mercy Hospital was a real institution and is now Brownsville Medical Center. James Whitmore wore "lifts" in his shoes to compensate for the height difference between himself and James Arness. It has also been noted that Whitmore employed bits of "business" (hand gestures and motions) during scenes in which he appeared in order to draw more attention to his character when not speaking. The Wilhelm scream, created three years earlier for the film Distant Drums, is used during the action sequences: when a sailor aboard the freighter is grabbed by an ant, when James Whitmore's character is caught in an ant's mandibles, and when an overhead wooden beam falls on a soldier in the Los Angeles storm-drain sequence. The giant ants, painted a purplish-green color, were constructed and operated by unseen technicians supervised by Ralph Ayers. During the climactic battle sequence in the Los Angeles sewers, there is a brief shot of one ant moving in the foreground with its side removed, revealing its mechanical interior. This blunder has been obscured in the DVD releases of the film. The film poster shows a gigantic ant with menacing human-like eyes rather than the normal compound eyes of an ant. The sounds the giant ants emit in the film were the calls of Bird-voiced tree frogs mixed in with the calls of a wood thrush, hooded warbler and red-bellied woodpecker. It was recorded at Indian Island, Georgia, on April 11, 1947 by the Cornell Lab of Ornithology.
House of Usher (also known as The Fall of the House of Usher and The Mysterious House of Usher) is a 1960 American horror film directed by Roger Corman and written by Richard Matheson from the short story "The Fall of the House of Usher" by Edgar Allan Poe. The film was the first of eight Corman/Poe feature films and stars Vincent Price, Myrna Fahey, Mark Damon and Harry Ellerbe. In 2005, the film was listed with the United States National Film Registry as being deemed "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant." Versions exist on DVD with running times between 76 and 80 minutes. The film was important in the history of American International Pictures which up until then had specialized in making low budget black and white films to go out on double bills. The market for this kind of movie was in decline so AIP decided to gamble on making a larger budgeted film in colour. The film was announced in February 1959 and was dubbed the company's "most ambitious film to date". A number of other companies announced Poe projects around this time: Alex Gordon had a version of Masque of the Red Death, Fox had Murders in the Rue Morgue, Ben Bogeus The Gold Bug, and The Raven. It was shot in fifteen days. Eugene Archer, in the September 15, 1960 edition of The New York Times wrote, "American-International, with good intentions of presenting a faithful adaption of Edgar Allan Poe's classic tale of the macabre...blithely ignored the author's style. Poe's prose style, as notable for ellipsis as imagery, compressed or eliminated the expository passages habitual to nineteenth-century fiction and invited the readers' imaginations to participate. By studiously avoiding explanations not provided by the text, and stultifying the audiences' imaginations by turning Poe's murky mansion into a cardboard castle encircled by literal green mist, the film producers have made a horror film that provides a fair degree of literacy at the cost of a patron's patience." He further opined, "Under the low-budget circumstances, Vincent Price and Myrna Fahey should not be blamed for portraying the decadent Ushers with arch affectation, nor Mark Damon held to account for the traces of Brooklynese that creep into his stiffly costumed impersonation of the mystified interloper." Other reviewers have been kinder, however; a positive assessment in Variety declared, "It's not precisely the Edgar Allen Poe short story known to high school English that emerges in 'House of Usher,' but it's a reasonably diverting and handsomely mounted variation ... The film has been mounted with care, skill and flair by producer-director Roger Corman and his staff." Harrison's Reports called it "fairly good entertainment. Although a bit too wordy, the abundant gore, photo gimmicks, special effects and unusual theme, help keep the viewer on his seat's edge." The Monthly Film Bulletin praised the film's "unusually resourceful" camerawork as well as "an excellent central performance" from Vincent Price, finding that although Corman's direction "does not suggest a great stylist in the making, he brings off the big scenes with some invention, as well as making the most of what was probably only a medium-sized budget." Betty Martin of the Los Angeles Times called it "a better than average horror film—if that's saying much," adding that Price "does a masterful job" in his role.
The Uninvited is a 1944 American supernatural horror film directed by Lewis Allen, in his feature film debut. It is based on the Dorothy Macardle novel Uneasy Freehold. The film stars Ray Milland, Ruth Hussey, and Donald Crisp, and introduces Gail Russell. Its plot follows an adult brother and sister who purchase a home in Cornwall plagued by paranormal events. Though set in England, The Uninvited was filmed at locations in San Francisco and Phoenix, Arizona in 1943. It received critical praise, and the film's cinematographer, Charles Lang, was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Black and White Cinematography at the 17th Academy Awards. Edith Head designed the costumes. The film has been noted by contemporary film scholars as being the first film in history to portray ghosts as legitimate entities rather than illusions or misunderstandings played for comedy. It depicts various supernatural phenomena, including disembodied voices, apparitions, and possession. The Uninvited was shot in San Francisco, California, and Phoenix, Arizona. It was among the first Hollywood feature films to portray a haunting as an authentic supernatural event. Previously, ghosts had often been played for comedy (The Ghost Goes West, 1936; Topper, 1937), were revealed to be practical jokes (Blondie Has Servant Trouble, 1940) or as a subterfuge to obscure an illegal activity (The Cat and the Canary, 1939; Abbott and Costello’s Hold That Ghost, 1941). The studio added special effects to the film, having decided at the last moment to emphasize its "supernatural premise"; those effects were removed by censors when the film was distributed in England. Victor Young's score produced a popular hit, "Stella by Starlight", based on the film’s main theme. "Stella by Starlight", now a jazz standard, is prized by players for its haunting and rich harmony. It has been recorded numerous times, by such artists as Miles Davis, Stan Getz and Dexter Gordon, and as a vocal (with lyrics by Ned Washington) by singers Dick Haymes, Frank Sinatra, Ray Charles, Tony Bennett, Ella Fitzgerald among others. Upon the film's February 1944 release, Bosley Crowther said it was "as solemnly intent on raising gooseflesh as any ghost-story weirdly told to a group of shivering youngsters around a campfire on a dark and windy night." Plot: In 1937, London music critic and composer Roderick "Rick" Fitzgerald and his sister Pamela fall in love with Windward House, an abandoned seaside home, during a holiday on Cornwall's rocky coast. They purchase it for an unusually low price from Commander Beech. Rick and Pamela meet Beech’s 20-year-old granddaughter, Stella Meredith, who lives with her grandfather in the nearby town of Biddlecombe. Stella is deeply upset by the sale because of her attachment to the house, despite its being where her mother, Mary Meredith, fell to her death. The commander has forbidden Stella to enter the house or to see Rick. However, she gains access to Windward House through Rick, who becomes infatuated with her. The Fitzgeralds' initial enchantment with the house diminishes when they unlock an artist's studio where they feel an inexplicable chill. Just before dawn, Rick hears the sobs of an unseen woman, a phenomenon that Pamela investigates whilst awaiting her brother's return with their Irish housekeeper, Lizzie Flynn. The superstitious Lizzie notices a peculiar draft on the stairs. Rick and Pamela must face the obvious: Windward House is haunted.
Fahrenheit 451 is a 1966 British dystopian drama film directed by François Truffaut and starring Oskar Werner, Julie Christie, and Cyril Cusack. Based on the 1953 novel of the same name by Ray Bradbury, the film takes place in a controlled society in an oppressive future in which the government sends out firemen to destroy all literature to prevent revolution and thinking. This was Truffaut's first colour film as well as his only English-language film. At the 1966 Venice Film Festival, Fahrenheit 451 was nominated for the Golden Lion. The film was shot at Pinewood Studios in England, with the monorail exterior scene taken at the French SAFEGE test track, in Châteauneuf-sur-Loire near Orléans, France (since dismantled). The film featured the Alton housing estate in Roehampton, south London and also Edgcumbe Park in Crowthorne, Berkshire. The final scene of the Book People was filmed in a rare and unexpected snowstorm that occurred on Julie Christie's birthday, April 14, 1966. The production work was done in French, as Truffaut spoke virtually no English but co-wrote the screenplay with Jean-Louis Richard. Truffaut expressed disappointment with the often stilted and unnatural English-language dialogue. He was much happier with the version that was dubbed into French. The movie's opening credits are spoken rather than displayed in type, which might be the director's hint of what life would be like in an illiterate culture. Tony Walton did costumes and production design, while Syd Cain did art direction. In 1971, some scenes from Fahrenheit 451 were used in The Different Ones, an episode of Rod Serling's Night Gallery television show, including the monorail and the flying policeman. The film was nominated for a 1967 Hugo Award in the Best Dramatic Presentation category, along with Fantastic Voyage and 3 episodes of Star Trek. It lost out to the Star Trek episode The Menagerie. At the 1966 Venice Film Festival, Fahrenheit 451 was nominated for the Golden Lion. Author Ray Bradbury said in later interviews that despite its flaws, he was pleased with the film. He was particularly fond of the film's climax, where the Book People walk through a snowy countryside, reciting the poetry and prose they've memorized, set to Herrmann's melodious score. He found it especially poignant and moving. In a 2009 interview Bradbury was quoted, "The mistake they made with the first one was to cast Julie Christie as both the revolutionary and the bored wife." According to an introduction by Ray Bradbury to a CD of a rerecording of the film score by William Stromberg conducting the Moscow Symphony Orchestra, Bradbury had suggested Bernard Herrmann to Truffaut. Bradbury had visited the set of Torn Curtain, meeting Alfred Hitchcock and Herrmann. When Truffaut contacted Bradbury for a conference about his book, Bradbury recommended Herrmann, as Bradbury knew Truffaut had written a detailed book about Hitchcock. When Herrmann asked Truffaut why he was chosen over modern composers, such as the director's friends Pierre Boulez or Karlheinz Stockhausen, the director replied that "They'll give me music of the twentieth century but you'll give me music of the twenty first!" Herrmann used a score of only string instruments, harp, xylophone, vibraphone, marimba and glockenspiel. As with Torn Curtain, Herrmann refused the studio's request to do a title song.
Night of the Blood Beast is a 1958 American science-fiction horror film about a team of scientists who are stalked by an alien creature, which implants its embryos in an astronaut's body during a space flight. Produced by exploitation filmmaker Roger Corman and his brother Gene, it was one of the first films directed by Bernard L. Kowalski and was written by first-time screenwriter Martin Varno, who was 21 years old. It starred several actors who had regularly worked with Roger Corman, including Michael Emmet, Ed Nelson, Steve Dunlap, Georgianna Carter and Tyler McVey. The film was theatrically released in Dec., 1958 on a double bill with She Gods of Shark Reef. It took Varno six weeks to write the script, the original working title of which was Creature from Galaxy 27. The story was partially influenced by the real-life Space Race and the Howard Hawks film The Thing from Another World (1951). Screenwriters Jerome Bixby and Harold Jacob Smith gave Varno uncredited assistance with the dialogue. With a budget of about $68,000, it was shot over seven days at the Charlie Chaplin Studios, Bronson Canyon and a television station on Mount Lee in Hollywood. The Blood Beast alien costume was also previously used in the Roger Corman film Teenage Caveman (1958), which was filmed just two weeks earlier. Art director Daniel Haller, who built the rocket-ship and other props, slept at the sound stage between work sessions. Following dissatisfaction with his treatment by the Cormans, Varno pursued two successful arbitration cases, one of which was for underpayment. The other was in response to Gene Corman's original story writing credit, even though Varno claimed to have written the entire story himself. Night at the Blood Beast was distributed by American International Pictures. It was test-screened for audiences in unadvertised sneak previews, in which audiences attending a different film were surprised with a screening of Blood Beast instead. Coincidentally, Martin Varno attended one of these sneak previews without any advance knowledge of what it was. The screening was also attended by Roger and Gene Corman, who were not pleased by Varno's presence. It was the first time the screenwriter had seen the completed film, which he did not enjoy and he said of watching it: "On my left side was sitting Forry Ackerman, and on my right side was sitting Jerry Bixby. And their main job was to keep my hands held down so I wouldn't cut my throat." During its theatrical release, Night of the Blood Beast was a double feature co-billed with She Gods of Shark Reef.
It! The Terror from Beyond Space is an independently made 1958 American science fiction horror film, produced by Robert Kent, directed by Edward L. Cahn, that stars Marshall Thompson, Shawn Smith (Shirley Patterson), and Kim Spalding. The film was distributed by United Artists as a double feature with Curse of the Faceless Man. The story involves Earth's second mission to Mars to discover the fate of the first. They find a sole survivor of that mission and bring him back. The survivor, the expedition's former commander, claims that his crew were killed by a hostile Martian life form. No one believes him until the creature, now a stowaway, begins hunting the rescue ship's crew as they return to Earth.The film's premise has been cited as an inspiration for screenwriter Dan O'Bannon's screenplay for Ridley Scott's 1979 film Alien. It! The Terror from Beyond Space was financed by Edward Small and was originally known as It! The Vampire from Beyond Space. Principal photography took place over a two-week period during mid-January 1958. It! was the last film of actor Ray "Crash" Corrigan. Corrigan was set to play the creature, but during pre-production, he did not want to travel all the way to Topanga in western Los Angeles County where Paul Blaisdell, the film's makeup artist, lived and operated his studio. Therefore, Blaisdell could not take exact measurements of Corrigan's head. Consequently, there were final fit problems with the creature's head prop: "[Corrigan's]... bulbous chin stuck out through the monster's mouth, so the make-up man painted his chin to look like a tongue." At the film review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes, the film holds an approval rating of 69% based on 16 reviews, with a weighted average rating of 5.9/10. Variety noted that the creature was the star: "‘It’ is a Martian by birth, a Frankenstein by instinct, and a copycat. The monster dies hard, brushing aside grenades, bullets, gas and an atomic pile, before snorting its last snort. It’s old stuff, with only a slight twist". A retrospective film review by Dennis Schwartz favorably compared "It!" with Alien, a 1979 film that borrowed its creature feature plot liberally from its earlier counterpart. In 1992, Millennium Publications adapted It! The Terror from Beyond Space as a short-run comic book series, written by Mark Ellis and Dean Zachary. A further comics adaptation was released by Midnite Movies (IDW Publishing) in 2010, for a three-issue run.
They Came from Beyond Space is a 1967 British Eastman Color science fiction film directed by Freddie Francis, written by Milton Subotsky and based on the book The Gods Hate Kansas by Joseph Millard. It was produced by Amicus Productions. The production came after Daleks – Invasion Earth: 2150 A.D. (1966) and used many of the sets and props from the former film as a cost-cutting measure. Several meteors fall in a field in England. Those who approach them are seemingly taken over, and barricade the area from intruders. A scientist is immune to the takeover due to a metal plate in his head. He enlists the assistance of a friend, who must melt down his silver cricket trophies to make a helmet to protect him. Although initially claiming that the takeover is benign, the aliens attempt to remove the metal plate from the scientist but are thwarted and learn the human value of courtesy. In the book, Doctor Temple is captured and the alien leader successfully removes his protective metal plate. The ensuing struggle between the two resembles something more like the Star Trek TOS episode "The Lights of Zetar" or The Exorcist than the kung fu commando battle in the movie. The book also gives us a look at the aliens as they might have been had their ancestors made different choices in the development of their culture. The contrast of the two alternative types of alien is similar to the contrast of the "invading women" daymare with the actual riim creatures of A. E. van Vogt's Voyage of the Space Beagle. The film was released on a double feature with The Terrornauts. Director Freddie Francis says that the producers had spent all their budget on The Terrornauts so there was no money left over for They Came from Beyond Space. The double feature failed at the box office and has been described as "the two worst films the company ever produced".
Dracula is a 1958 British horror film directed by Terence Fisher and written by Jimmy Sangster based on Bram Stoker's novel of the same name. The first in the series of films starring Christopher Lee as Count Dracula, this original also features Peter Cushing as Doctor Van Helsing, along with Michael Gough, Melissa Stribling, Carol Marsh, and John Van Eyssen. In the U.S. the film was retitled Horror of Dracula to avoid confusion with the earlier Dracula (1931) starring Bela Lugosi, and the film was released in the U.S. in 1958 on a double feature with the film The Thing That Couldn't Die. Production began at Bray Studios on 17 November 1957 with an investment of £81,000. As Count Dracula, Lee fixed the image of the fanged vampire in popular culture. In 2017 a poll of 150 actors, directors, writers, producers and critics for Time Out magazine saw it ranked the 65th best British film ever. The filming of Dracula's destruction included a shot in which Dracula appears to peel away his decaying skin. This was accomplished by putting a layer of red makeup on Lee's face, and then covering his entire face with a thin coating of mortician's wax, which was then made up to conform to his normal skin tone. When he raked his fingers across the wax, it revealed the "raw" marks underneath. This startling sequence was cut out, but was restored for the 2012 Blu-ray release, using footage from a badly damaged Japanese print. At the end of the film, Dracula is destroyed on an inlaid Zodiac wheel on the floor, which has several quotes in Latin and Greek. The inner circle in Greek has a quote from Homer's Odyssey Book 18.136–7: "τοῖος γὰρ νόος ἐστὶν ἐπιχθονίων ἀνθρώπων οἷον ἐπ᾽ ἦμαρ ἄγησι πατὴρ ἀνδρῶν τε θεῶν τε" ("The mind of men who live on the earth is such as the day the father of gods and men [Zeus] brings upon them.") The outer wheel is written in Latin, and is a quote from Hesiod via Bartolomeo Anglico (De proprietatibus rerum, Book 8, Chapter 2): "Tellus vero primum siquidem genuit parem sibi coelum stellis ornatum, ut ipsam totam obtegat, utque esset beatis Diis sedes tuta semper." ("And Earth first bare starry Heaven, equal to herself, to cover her on every side, and to be an ever-sure abiding-place for the blessed gods.") Dracula's ring is left on the glyph of the sign of Aquarius on the Zodiac wheel. Dracula was a critical and commercial success upon its release and was well received by critics and fans of Stoker's works. The film currently holds an approval rating of 88% on review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes based on 33 reviews, with an average rating of 7.8/10. The website's critical consensus states: "Trading gore for grandeur, Horror of Dracula marks an impressive turn for inveterate Christopher Lee as the titular vampire, and a typical Hammer mood that makes aristocracy quite sexy."
The Screaming Skull is a 1958 independently made American black-and-white horror film, produced by John Kneubuhl, T. Frank Woods, and John Coots, directed by Alex Nicol, that stars John Hudson, Peggy Webber, Russ Conway, Tony Johnson, and Nicol. The Screaming Skull marked Nicol's directorial debut; he decided to try it because he felt that he was not acting in the roles which he wanted. The film was distributed by American International Pictures on a double bill in different markets with either Earth vs. the Spider or Terror from the Year 5000. The film's storyline concerns a neurotic newlywed woman who believes she is being haunted by the ghost of her new husband's previous wife. The Screaming Skull was directed by Alex Nicol, an actor who had roles on Broadway productions and often played supporting characters. He decided to try directing a film, as he felt that he had not been performing the roles that he desired. Nicol noted that "as an actor, you're in perfect position, if you choose to do so, to watch the directors you're working with setting up the shots, making decisions as to where to place the camera, and so I picked up a lot over the years". John Hudson stars as Eric, Jenni's new husband. Jenni is played by Peggy Webber. In order to get Webber interested in starring in the film, Nicol told her that he was planning to do a remake of the Alfred Hitchcock film Rebecca and brought a copy of the screenplay to her house. Other cast members include Russ Conway as Reverend Snow and Toni Johnson as Snow's wife. Nicol also stars as Mickey, the gardener.
Missile to the Moon is an independently made 1958 American black-and-white science fiction film drama, produced by Marc Frederic, directed by Richard E. Cunha, that stars Richard Travis, Cathy Downs and K. T. Stevens. The film was distributed by Astor Pictures and is a remake of an earlier Astor Pictures-distributed film, Cat-Women of the Moon (1953). Missile to the Moon was released in late 1958 as a double feature with Cunha's Frankenstein's Daughter. A spaceship blasts off from Earth with five aboard, but one of them is secretly a Moon man returning home. He dies by accident during the trip to Luna. What the remaining four find waiting for them when they arrive on the Moon is well beyond their expectations: huge rock creatures, giant lunar spiders, and a cave-dwelling civilization made up of beautiful women. Missile to the Moon is an even lower-budget remake of the low-budget film drama Cat-Women of the Moon (1953) and closely follows the plot details of the earlier feature. That film offered 3D as its big attraction, but all its male characters were middle-aged. The 1958 remake opted to better appeal to a teenage audience by adding a pair of youthful escaped convicts, one a good kid who had made a mistake, the other an incorrigible crook, and providing them with lunar love interests in due course. In the 1953 film, the bit players portraying the minor Moon maidens are described as "Hollywood cover girls"; in the remake, they are credited as "international beauty contest winners". The lunar landscape used in the film is Vasquez Rocks, a popular television and feature film shooting location near Los Angeles. A red camera filter was used to make the blue sky photograph very dark on the black-and-white film, but the result is still far from the ideal starry black. Bits of scrubby vegetation can be seen in the background of some shots. No attempt is made to convince the viewer that the Moon is an airless void where humans would weigh one-sixth their normal Earth weight. When one of the space-suited astronauts is forced into direct sunlight, unshielded from its intensity, he bursts into flames, despite the lack of an external oxygen atmosphere; in seconds he is reduced to a skeleton. The large, slow-moving rock creatures have a passing resemblance to the shape of Gumby, the popular stop motion clay animation children's television character introduced in 1955. The giant spider prop is wire-controlled from above; it is exactly the same "Moon spider" used five years earlier in Cat-Women of the Moon. Nina Bara, who plays the evil, scheming, back-stabbing Alpha, was familiar to genre audiences from her role as Tonga on the television series Space Patrol (1950-55). Popular 1960s/1970s television and movie co-star Leslie Parrish also appears, billed under her real name Marjorie Hellen.
The Day the Earth Stood Still (a.k.a. Farewell to the Master and Journey to the World) is a 1951 American black-and-white science fiction film produced by Julian Blaustein. Directed by Robert Wise, it stars Michael Rennie, Patricia Neal, Billy Gray, Hugh Marlowe, and Sam Jaffe. The screenplay was written by Edmund H. North, based on the 1940 science fiction short story "Farewell to the Master" by Harry Bates. The score was composed by Bernard Herrmann. In The Day the Earth Stood Still, a humanoid alien visitor named Klaatu comes to Earth, accompanied by a powerful eight-foot tall robot, Gort, to deliver an important message that will affect the entire human race. In 1995, the film was selected for preservation in the United States National Film Registry as "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant" Variety praised the documentary style of The Day the Earth Stood Still and its reviewer wrote that "the yarn is told interestingly enough and imbued with sufficient science-fiction lures and suspense so that only seldom does its moralistic wordiness get in the way ... Cast, although secondary to the story, works well". Harrison's Reports wrote: "Very good! It is by far the best of the science-fiction pictures yet produced. It holds one's interest undiminished from start to finish and, although the theme is admittedly fantastic, one is made to feel as if he is seeing a real-life occurrence because of the expert handling of the subject matter and the extremely fine special effects work". The Los Angeles Times praised the film's seriousness, though it also found "certain subversive elements". Bosley Crowther of The New York Times wrote a dismissive review, however, calling the film "tepid entertainment" and describing Gort as "oddly unmenacing". The Day the Earth Stood Still was moderately successful when released, accruing US$1,850,000 in distributors' domestic (U. S. and Canada) rentals, making it the year's 52nd biggest earner. The Day the Earth Stood Still earned more plaudits overseas: the Hollywood Foreign Press Association gave the filmmakers a special Golden Globe Award for "promoting international understanding". Bernard Herrmann's score also received a nomination at the Golden Globes. The French magazine Cahiers du cinéma was also impressed, its contributor Pierre Kast called it "almost literally stunning" and praised its "moral relativism".
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Space Spook exist in a dimension between the living and the dead. Trapped in a time splinter between Post-World War 1945 and the Summer of Love 1967. The first top secret Cosmonaut to ride a rocket beyond the Stratosphere at the beginning of 'The Space-Race'. The mission was a failure and now Space Spook bides time relaying satellite transmissions to Earth. Trying to warn humanity, through horror and science fiction films. Warn them of the Red Scare, the menace of Communism that Space Spook only escaped by being trapped in time. Knowing that a large portion of films from this era are riddled with anti-communist themes. Space Spook transmits these films hoping, praying all humanity wakes up to the horror of ........ Sadly old colour & b&w sci-fi & horrors are a lost art in the days of CGI. Grab some popcorn & enjoy some old-school classic alien/monster movies with your family & friends. Or just cozy up alone in the dark if you dare. Subscribe & stay tuned as I will be adding more movies daily. Thank you for visiting Space Spook Presents. With out YOU this transmission is just lost in time and space.