B&W Challenge - April 2013

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1.
Nosferatu (1922)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.0/10 X  
Vampire Count Orlok expresses interest in a new residence and real estate agent Hutter's wife. (94 mins.)
Director: F.W. Murnau
“ Seen on April the 1st, 2013 (Day 91: Monday)

An absolute landmark for the horror film genre, loaded with iconic imagery and brilliantly eerie. Every shot is powerful, aesthetically well-build, and has a meaningful place in the plot.
The editing is truly outstanding and very much ahead of its time. While the narrative remains clear and logical, suspension is cleverly build by swapping to and fro simultaneous events. At same point the journey of count Orlok is only shown by close-ups of the sails and the sea water (so without showing the complete ship) directly followed by a shot of Hutter trying to cross a small mountain stream.
This shot is symbolic to the unequal powers of the two characters. The water of the stream (directly shown after the closeup of the sea water) equals the easy journey of the count. While Hutter is assigned to a rough pathway over bricks and stones.
The alterations to the story of Dracula, such as the ending of the movie and the references to the plaque, are all very intelligent.
Highly re-watchable, for it seems to be even more exiting with each repeated view.

10/10

- movie 191
- horror movie 96
- ftv 119
- ftv horror 55

           ” - emertens
 
2.
The Mummy (1932)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
A living mummy stalks the beautiful woman he believes is the reincarnation of his lover. (73 mins.)
Director: Karl Freund
“ Seen on April the 1st, 2013 (Day 91: Monday)

A classic Universal monster movie. Very good indeed. While the story is not based on a book, it contains some similarity to Dracula. Nevertheless it provides a blueprint for a lot mummy movies to follow. The photography is quite good: good compositions, very atmospheric and with clever use of contrast. But there's a lack of camera movement. Some scenes already contain music to provide tension and atmosphere.
Karloff gives a very good performance and Jack Pierce's make-up is astounding. It makes the mummy very creepy.


8-9.5/10

- movie 192
- horror movie 97
- ftv 119
- ftv horror 55

           ” - emertens
 
3.
The Rawhide Terror (1934)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 3.9/10 X  
Twelve renegades dressed as Indians kill the parents of two brothers. The brothers who have similar birth marks then separate... (52 mins.)
“ Seen on April the 1st, 2013 (Day 91: Monday)

I have no idea why, but I enjoyed watching this movie quite a bit. It reminded me of some movies I've seen as a kid in the cinema. Imagine seeing this movie at young age in the 1930s. I think it must've been a real exciting experience for a kid back then - in a era where television was still nonexistent. All the fighting and shooting - and of course the creepy Rawhide Killer.
But honestly, it's quite a stinker of a flick.
However this movie contains a rather intriguingly shot scene. During a chase the camera films backwards from the front carriage. All the stunts are clearly real (for instance when one of the cowboys jumps from his horse onto the carriage). It's quite impressive. I guess they used a car when filmed from that angle(?)


3-6/10

- movie 193
- horror movie 98
- ftv 120
- ftv horror 56

           ” - emertens
 
4.
Murder at Dawn (1932)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.2/10 X  
Mad scientist works on a death ray in his mountain hideaway. (62 mins.)
Director: Richard Thorpe
“ Seen on April the 1st, 2013 (Day 91: Monday)

An incredible confusing mess of a movie. It plays inside a mansion referred to by the natives as "haunted", while it actually is just the residence of a scientist, who just invented a device to produce unlimited power from sunlight: the VXO Accumulator.
For once the "mad" genius, isn't the antagonist. This time it's a black cloaked caretaker who want to steal the formula.
Along comes a rather large group of additional characters. The four main protagonists: the professor's daughter and her fiancé, accompanied by a befriended married couple (the alcoholic guy is clearly but ineffectively thrown in for comic relief). Then there's a housekeeper (the caretaker's mom), a judge, a detective and a couple of unidentified characters peering in through windows. Really, who were all these people? But a lot of things that happen in this movie remain unexplained. When a group of people visits the professor's laboratory, someone's hand sneakingly turns on a device, which only causes one of girls to get a bit frightened. Was that the sole purpose? And why was there a doll dressed up as the caretaker - and why was it hanging yodeling in a closet???
The movie doesn't contain a score, except for the title sequences (which is not really surprising for a 1932 movie). The camerawork is rather static. There are a couple of nice shots, but not more than just a few, and definitely not enough to lift the movie to a higher level.
Sadly the movie also contains some foul racism.

2.5-5.5/10

- movie 194
- horror movie 99
- ftv 121
- ftv horror 57

           ” - emertens
 
5.
The Ninth Guest (1934)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  
Eight strangers are invited by a mysterious unknown host to spend the night in a penthouse apartment... (65 mins.)
“ Seen on April the 1st, 2013 (Day 91: Monday)

What a delightful surprise! A beautifully made horror whodunit, in several aspect comparable to Agatha Christie's "Ten Little Indians" (aka: "And Then There Were None"). Especially the camera work is excellent. The movie contains a lot of clever details. Such as for instance: the clock and its continuously heard ticking (which truly adds to the suspense). A joy from start to finish. Splendid.


8-9.5/10

- movie 195
- horror movie 100
- ftv 122
- ftv horror 58

           ” - emertens
 
6.
The Student of Prague (1913)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  
A poor student rescues a beautiful countess and soon becomes obsessed with her. A sorcerer makes a deal... (85 mins.)
“ Seen on April the 1st, 2013 (Day 91: Monday)

Although the imdb indicates a runtime of 41 minutes, my copy of this movie has a running time of 56.32 minutes. Much alike this version on youtube. This site actually mentions an even longer runtime...(?)

A difficult movie to review (or rate). Feature length movies were still a novelty. George Méliès was still making his special-effects-filled fantasy shorts. It would take another two years until D. W. Griffith's "Birth of a Nation" was released.
I thought it was a very well crafted, thoughtful movie. The plot unfolds clear and natural. The pacing is very plausible, although most of the separate shots are relatively long. So sometimes you get the impression the proceedings are starting to drag a bit, but then the next shot pushes the drama a reasonable step forward. So it's actually very well balanced in speed.
Some of the photography is quite good. And the story is rather original.


7-9/10

- movie 196
- horror movie 101
- ftv 123
- ftv horror 59

           ” - emertens
 
7.
Murder by the Clock (1931)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  
An elderly woman installs a horn in her crypt in case she's buried alive. (76 mins.)
Director: Edward Sloman
“ Seen on April the 1st, 2013 (Day 91: Monday)

The second movie I watched today with Martha Mattox playing the part of an hag housekeeper. (I guess after The Cat and the Canary she got type-casted in type of roles.) In both movies she's also the only one who cares for a similar sort of antagonist: a rather tall, rough, brute and monstrous type of man.
This movie definitely is a lot better than "Murder at Dawn", but it's still no masterpiece. The story unfolds pretty clear, but it's all a bit stagy and wooden - especially the performances. Again the camera is also rather static, but the photography is quite interesting. Very rich in tonality. A lot of effort was put into the lighting.
The story was rather original too. The start about an elderly woman who installs a horn in her crypt in case she's buried alive, was rather familiar. Especially the part where she's in two minds about which family members she going to leave the inheritance. But the second part of the movie is more interesting. The main antagonist is a very wicked "femme-fatal", who constantly seduces her misguided lovers in killing opponents as well as committing other crimes.


5.5-7.5/10

- movie 197
- horror movie 102
- ftv 124
- ftv horror 60

           ” - emertens
 
8.
The Monkey's Paw (1948)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  
A mother wishes for the return of her dead son, and that wish is granted by a charm made from a severed monkey's paw. (64 mins.)
Director: Norman Lee
“ Seen on April the 1st, 2013 (Day 91: Monday)

I thought I was going to watch the 1933 version. Which is pretty stupid. The 1933 movie is considered lost... I didn't know that. At first I was surprised it was a British movie and that several aspects of it seem to be of much more recent date. Then I recognized actress Megs Jenkins (and at the end of the movie Alfie Bass), whom I didn't expect in a 1933 movie.

I enjoyed watching this movie. The performances were quite good. (a bit of a relief after "Murder by the Clock") And I have a soft spot for British movies. However the copy I own is a rather bad VHS-rip, which probably destroyed some of the charm of the film.

6.5-7.5/10

- movie 198
- horror movie 103
- ftv 125
- ftv horror 61

           ” - emertens
 
9.
The Bat Whispers (1930)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  
A master criminal terrorizes the occupants of an isolated country mansion. (83 mins.)
Director: Roland West
“ Seen on April the 2nd, 2013 (Day 92: Tuesday)

Please be gentle, when judging this wonderful oddity of a movie. Although not a masterpiece I loved every single frame of it.
Take notice that it was made before Dracula(1931) and Frankenstein (1931). Sound was still an absolute novelty. Every sound the actors made was recorded. When they walk away from the microphone, you hear their footsteps as if on stage in a theater, while their voices decrease in volume. Nevertheless wind and thunder sound effects are added to provide a creepy atmosphere.
The most amazing aspect of this movie is the fact that it's wide-screen. Before the movie starts there's a textual announcement applied about the restoration of the original 65 mm nitrate(!) negative. I have no idea if this movie was only shown in special theaters and if special projectors were needed for those screenings.
The cinematography is superb. One would think that the introduction of this new process would result in rather static camera work, as for instance happened with the introduction of color and sound. Special cameras were required to shoot these films, and they were far to big to move around. But the camera work in "The Bat Whispers" is quite motional. The scene where the "bat" connects a light switch to a chair is filmed vertically from above to below with a moving camera!
There are also a couple of wonderful shots where the camera moves through a rather realistic diorama.
Absolute lovely.


6.5-9.5/10

- movie 199
- horror movie 104
- ftv 126
- ftv horror 62

           ” - emertens
 
10.
The Beast of Borneo (1934)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 3.6/10 X  
A crazed scientist needs primates to conduct experiments to prove his own theory of evolution, so he organizes an expedition into the jungles of Borneo to capture the animals he needs. (63 mins.)
Director: Harry Garson
“ Seen on April the 2nd, 2013 (Day 92: Tuesday)

Hurray! I found a new addition for my collection of "funniest extremely bad movies". This one is a non-stop laugh from the beginning to the end. Although not intended, the dialogue is unbelievable corny.

Dr. Boris Borodoff: "Well, if the mountain won't come to Mohamed, Mohamed must go to the mountain."
Alma: "In Borneo?"

Alma: "The longer you experiment doctor, the more I believe you're right".

Alma: "He may be an obnoxious person, but he's a man. I think I put on my prettiest dress" - in the next scene she wears trousers.

The growl of the orangutan-k (Dr Boris talks with an ultra-slow Bela Lugosi accent, messes up the interpunction, and invents extra letters along the way) is hilarious.

A hoot from start to finish.


2-8/10

- movie 200
- horror movie 105
- ftv 127
- ftv horror 63

           ” - emertens
 
11.
Eerie Tales (1919)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  
After the old-books shop closes, portraits of the Strumpet, Death, and the Devil come to life and amuse... (112 mins.)
Director: Richard Oswald
“ Seen on April the 2nd, 2013 (Day 92: Tuesday)

Very entertaining horror anthology. The framing story was a bit silly and the fifth segment a bit simplistic, but the other four segments were quite good (my favorite was the first one, with some serious mystery and a very creepy, black ending. Don't forget he had the girl in his arms! Each part was inventively and characteristically shaped. The actors did a good job. (I find Conrad Veidt incredibly intriguing. Oh no... I don't want to develop a crush on a guy who's already been dead for seventy years...).


7-9/10

- movie 201
- horror movie 106
- ftv 128
- ftv horror 64

           ” - emertens
 
12.
The Fall of the House of Usher (1928)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  
Allan has a hard time finding the Usher's house, which is known to be cursed... But he is a personal friend of Roderick Usher... (63 mins.)
Director: Jean Epstein
“ Seen on April the 2nd, 2013 (Day 92: Tuesday)

Artistic, expressionistic, surrealistic, atmospheric, well-photographed and slooooooooooow.
To make it worse, I have a copy where the French title cards are translated by spoken word. For some reason they choose a Frenchman to do this job. His accent was so strong it was sometimes hard to understand him. Furthermore because of this, there was no escape from the incredible somnolent "new-age"(?) score.
Don't watch it if you're a bit drowsy.


7-8.5/10

- movie 202
- horror movie 107
- ftv 129
- ftv horror 65

           ” - emertens
 
13.
The Black Room (1935)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.0/10 X  
Ignoring an ancient prophecy, evil brother Gregor seeks to maintain his feudal power on his his Tyrolean estate by murdering and impersonating his benevolent younger twin. (70 mins.)
“ Seen on April the 3rd, 2013 (Day 93: Wednesday)

A shameful underrated horror movie. One of the absolute best of the 1930s. I can't think of a single element to criticize. Everything is top-notch. It's modern, it's vivid, the pacing is flawless, really years ahead of its time. Aesthetically en technically it's all just perfect. Fantastic score (1935!), clever, imaginative cinematography. And Karloff gives one of his best performances. I guess he must have enjoyed it, playing two different characters. Very notable is a scene in which one of the twins (Karloff) tries to imitate his brother in front of a mirror, but doesn't convince at all. A remarkable performance!


9-10/10

- movie 203
- horror movie 108
- ftv 130
- ftv horror 66

           ” - emertens
 
14.
De spooktrein (1939)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
A group of travelers find themselves stranded for the night at a deserted train station, which according to the old stationmaster, has been haunted for the last 20 years. (70 mins.)
Director: Karel Lamac
“ Seen on April the 3rd, 2013 (Day 93: Wednesday)

Aka: The Ghost Train

A horror movie from the 1930s made in my home country. It's probably the only one. A lovely flick, very well made, although not perfect. The story unfolds a bit "unbalanced". The movie starts with the introduction of a group of rather comical figures. They travel together -unacquainted to each other- on the same train. At some point there's an argument between an elderly, rather posh lady and a cheeky young bloke The woman throws the guy's cigar (cigarette?) out of the window, since it's bothering her parrot, whereupon the guy throws out the bird. In panic the lady pulls the emergency brake. This leads to a delay of several minutes (the parrot is rescued), but because of this, a group of passengers misses their next connection later on. They're now stranded on a spooky, abandoned train station. The telephone doesn't work, and it's raining outside, so they decide to spend the night in the waiting room to catch the earliest train next morning.
This all takes quite a long time. Only halfway through the movie it gets "scary". They discover the stationmaster is killed. The legend of the ghost of a previous stationmaster is told. A lunatic woman who has escaped from a mental asylum also tries to find shelter. And in the end there's even a ghost train.
Very entertaining movie, with some good camerawork, a good score and some fine performances.


7.5-8.5/10

- movie 204
- horror movie 109
- ftv 130
- ftv horror 66

           ” - emertens
 
15.
The Demon Barber of Fleet Street (1936)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  
A Fleet Street barber recounts the story of Sweeney Todd, a notorious barber who in the last century murdered many customers for their money. (76 mins.)
Director: George King
“ Seen on April the 3rd, 2013 (Day 93: Wednesday)

My first encounter with Todd Slaughter as well as the story/urban legend of Sweeney Todd. Both were a bit disappointing. The movie was very squeaking and Todd very hammy. The plot was filled with holes and illogic absurdities.
Then there's the tiresome audio track, which by itself was already scratchy and noisy, but was made even worse by some sort of digital "re-mastering" in a pathetic attempt to clean it up.
I'm not looking forward to the other Todd Slaughter flicks I'm planning to watch this month.

5-6.5/10

- movie 205
- horror movie 110
- ftv 131
- ftv horror 67

           ” - emertens
 
16.
A Page of Madness (1926)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  
A man takes a job at an asylum with hopes of freeing his imprisoned wife. (70 mins.)
“ Seen on April the 3rd, 2013 (Day 93: Wednesday)

Aka: A page of Madness

Well, what can I say...
"Insane"?
:-)

A true masterpiece.


10/10

- movie 206
- horror movie 111
- ftv 132
- ftv horror 68

           ” - emertens
 
17.
Black Moon (1934)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  
A young girl who lives on a tropical island loses her parents to a voodoo sacrifice, but although she manages to escape the island... (68 mins.)
“ Seen on April the 3rd, 2013 (Day 93: Wednesday)

Just after I added this movie to my list I discovered that this is the third movie by Roy William Neill I've seen in the last 3 days and that I gave them all a very high rating. It's just an odd coincidence. I've never heard of the guy before, and I wasn't aware that these three movies were all directed by the same person. But I'm glad - to myself - that my ratings turned out to be as trustworthy consistent as this. :-)



9-10/10

- movie 207
- horror movie 112
- ftv 133
- ftv horror 69

           ” - emertens
 
18.
The Man Who Lived Again (1936)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  
Dr. Laurience, a brilliant but unstable scientist experimenting with transferring minds, becomes vengeful when his magnate patron withdraws his support. (66 mins.)
“ Seen on April the 3rd, 2013 (Day 93: Wednesday)

This one was also great. Fast paced and fun, with outstanding performances of Karloff and Frank Cellier. Cecil Parker looks almost the same as he did twenty years later in "The Ladykillers".
The photography, the score, everything is fine.
A true delight.

8.5-10/10

- movie 208
- horror movie 113
- ftv 134
- ftv horror 70

           ” - emertens
 
19.
King Kong (1933)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  
A film crew goes to a tropical island for an exotic location shoot and discovers a colossal giant gorilla who takes a shine to their female blonde star. He is then captured and brought back to New York City for public exhibition. (100 mins.)
“ Seen on April the 4th, 2013 (Day 94: Thursday)


7-9.5/10

- movie 209
- horror movie 114
- ftv 134
- ftv horror 70

           ” - emertens
 
20.
The Devil's Daughter (1939)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 3.5/10 X  
Sylvia Walton returns from Harlem to take over a Jamaican plantation from her vindictive half-sister, amid the growing sound of drums. (52 mins.)
Director: Arthur Leonard
“ Seen on April the 4th, 2013 (Day 94: Thursday)

This movie starts with a group of black people, joyful singing and dancing, without instrumental sound, just in the middle of a field. The scene goes on for minutes. Although an omen for the level of crapness of the rest of the movie, it didn't bore me. Even if it unintentionally seemed to contain a lot of rather sad connotation (apartheid, racism, poverty and perhaps even hunger - they all look very skinny)

The story tells of Sylvia, a young woman from Harlem, who comes to Jamaica to take control of a plantation, after her half-sister Isabel has disappeared. The unlikable overseer Ramsey (the only white person in the movie) knows her residence and together they hatch a plot. Since Isabel's mother was an Haitiian, this appaearently means Isabel is involved in Voodoo. She plans to murder Sylvia by casting a spell on her. By the end it all turnes out to be a sort of hoax. Sylvia was only heavily drugged.
There a sublplot going on about a grinning Harlem hustler whose soul is supposedly transported into a pig. (Harrington is probably the only capable actor in the movie, although he plays a terrible wrong stereotype)

For some reason I still enjoyed watching this movie. The fight between Ramsey and Lowden (Sylvia's true lover) is real hoot. But take my word for it: it's a stinker of a flick.


1-3.5/10

- movie 210
- horror movie 115
- ftv 135
- ftv horror 71

           ” - emertens
 
21.
The Parson's Widow (1920)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  
A young man is elected by a small village to be its parson. As part of his duties, he is required to marry the widow of the parson before him... (71 mins.)
Director: Carl Th. Dreyer
“ Seen on April the 4th, 2013 (Day 94: Thursday)


8-9.5/10

- movie 211
- horror movie 116
- ftv 136
- ftv horror 72

           ” - emertens
 
22.
The Golem (1920)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
In 16th-century Prague, a rabbi creates the Golem - a giant creature made of clay. Using sorcery, he brings the creature to life in order to protect the Jews of Prague from persecution. (91 mins.)
“ Seen on April the 4th, 2013 (Day 94: Thursday)

Just copy/pasted a few parts of other imdb reviews, that come close to my opinion:

Much of the film's charm is in its visual style. The sets by Hans Poelzig are a strange but cohesive mixture of medieval, nouveau, and surrealism, and the cinematography by legendary photography Karl Freund uses high contrast black and white to truly remarkable effect

The Golem is a tolerance film that studies in depth the relationship between Jews and Christians in Prague. To his credit, Wegener refuses to impose stereotypes on either party, instead concentrating on individual characters and using mass characterizations only to highlight the themes of the film. It is interesting to note that the Jews are all dressed in black and with very few exceptions appear to be bent with age, a tribute to an aging and dying religion. However, they are also portrayed to be earnest and hard-working, with strong communal instincts. The Christians, by contrast, appear bright, shiny, and new. They are dressed in light colors and are young and wealthy, and outwardly appear to be God's new chosen. However, they are also portrayed as foolish bohemians who do not take God seriously.


7.5-9/10

- movie 212
- horror movie 117
- ftv 136
- ftv horror 72

           ” - emertens
 
23.
Night of Terror (1933)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  
The heirs to a family fortune are required to attend a seance at the spooky old family mansion. However, throughout the night members of the family are being killed off one by one. (65 mins.)
Director: Ben Stoloff
“ Seen on April the 5th, 2013 (Day 95: Friday)


I guess the scriptwriters were afraid, there was a risk the movie could have too less of a plot. It all starts with a disfigured maniac who started a real killing spree around town. For some reason his latest victims are all residents or visitors of the Rinehart mansion.
Professor Hornsby - fiancé of one of the Rinehart girls - is preparing a test for his latest invention: to live without oxygen.
This ridicules test involves him being buried alive for 8 hours.
Meanwhile we get introduced to several other characters. There's a jovial uncle, owner of the estate, who seems to spy on the professor. He gets killed by the Maniac, whereupon a Cat-and-the-Canary sub-plot is added. So except for Professor Hornsby's fiancé (who is also messing around with a newspaper reporter) several other heirs are introduced. Then there's a turbaned Lugosi, wasted in the role of "mystic" butler and there's "Sika", a woman who is urged by the others not to get in a trance all the time. She's also the medium who leads a séance at the end of the movie. Of course there's also the black chauffeur, overly scared and stupid, you know: the sad, stereotypical "comic relief". Several other scientists and a bunch of police men. The chief constantly picks someone at random, yelling: "I'm glad I solved another murder case".
At the end of the movie the maniac talks directly to the audience and claims that he will haunt them if they reveal the plot twist to anyone.
Very amusing.

4.5-6.5/10

- movie 213
- horror movie 118
- ftv 137
- ftv horror 73

           ” - emertens
 
24.
Charlie Chan's Secret (1936)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  
The heir to a huge fortune is presumed drowned, then shows up, is then murdered. (72 mins.)
Director: Gordon Wiles
“ Seen on April the 5th, 2013 (Day 95: Friday)


7.5-8.5/10

- movie 214
- horror movie 119
- ftv 138
- ftv horror 74

           ” - emertens
 
25.
Genuine (1920)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.0/10 X  
Extremely rare work of Robert Wiene. From the director and year of excellent "The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari" this work was eventually overshadowed by the success of Caligari. It has a dreamy atmosphere, like another world or something. (88 mins.)
Director: Robert Wiene
“ Seen on April the 5th, 2013 (Day 95: Friday)

Wow, expressionism goes camp.

6.5-9/10

- movie 215
- horror movie 120
- ftv 139
- ftv horror 75

           ” - emertens
 
26.
Dracula (1931)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  
The ancient vampire Count Dracula arrives in England and begins to prey upon the virtuous young Mina. (85 mins.)
Director: Tod Browning
“ Seen on April the 5th, 2013 (Day 95: Friday)


7.5-8.5/10

- movie 216
- horror movie 121
- ftv 139
- ftv horror 75

           ” - emertens
 
27.
The Most Dangerous Game (1932)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
An insane hunter arranges for a ship to be wrecked on an island where he can indulge in some sort of hunting and killing of the passengers. (63 mins.)
“ Seen on April the 6th, 2013 (Day 96: Saturday)


8.5-9.5/10

- movie 217
- horror movie 122
- ftv 139
- ftv horror 75

           ” - emertens
 
28.
Voodoo Man (1944)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.2/10 X  
Dr. Richard Marlowe uses a combination of voodoo rite and hypnotic suggestion, attempting to revive his beautiful... (62 mins.)
“ Seen on April the 6th, 2013 (Day 96: Saturday)


4-6.5/10

- movie 218
- horror movie 123
- ftv 140
- ftv horror 76

           ” - emertens
 
29.
Mark of the Vampire (1935)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  
When a nobleman is murdered, a professor of the occult blames vampires; but not all is what it seems. (60 mins.)
Director: Tod Browning
“ Seen on April the 6th, 2013 (Day 96: Saturday)

This movie comes with a lot of negative luggage and I'm not sure how to judge it. First of all, it has the bitter taste of a not-so necessary remake. Brownings and Lugosi team up again to make another vampire movie and it really screams "Dracula" throughout".
Because of that, comparing becomes inevitable and I don't like that. Dracula is an iconic film, of enormous historic value (especially for the horror genre). If it had flopped, the whole Universal Horror wave would probably not have existed. What's the use of making a rip-off, of your own movie, improving some of the flaws of the original, while at the same time denying the whole existence of it.
According to some other reviewers it's also sort of a remake of "London at Midnight" (a now lost movie, starring Lon Chaney). I don't know if that's a good or a bad thing...

In some aspect's (not all) this film is better than Dracula. It isn't as stagy and some of the scenes have a better atmosphere than similar ones in it's predecessor. However it never gets to the level of a true masterpiece. Browning might have been very important for development of horror as a separate film genre, he wasn't nearly as good a director as W. F. Murnau, Paul Leni or James Whale.
To make things worse MGM deleted about 20 minutes of the movie, creating plot holes as moon craters.
The movie has a couple of interesting sound effects, but there still isn't a music score.

I personally find the plot twist at the end preposterous. It's something for an Abbott and Costello movie.


5.5-8.5/10

- movie 219
- horror movie 124
- ftv 141
- ftv horror 77

           ” - emertens
 
30.
The Invisible Man (1933)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  
A scientist finds a way of becoming invisible, but in doing so, he becomes murderously insane. (71 mins.)
Director: James Whale
“ Seen on April the 7th, 2013 (Day 97: Sunday)


10/10

- movie 220
- horror movie 125
- ftv 141
- ftv horror 77

           ” - emertens
 
31.
Dante's Inferno (1911)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.0/10 X  
Loosely adapted from Dante's Divine Comedy and inspired by the illustrations of Gustav Doré the original silent film has been restored and has a new score by Tangerine Dream. (68 mins.)
“ Seen on April the 8th, 2013 (Day 98: Monday)


8-9.5/10

- movie 221
- horror movie 126
- ftv 142
- ftv horror 78

           ” - emertens
 
32.
Furcht (1917)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  
(72 mins.)
Director: Robert Wiene
“ Seen on April the 8th, 2013 (Day 98: Monday)


8-9.5/10

- movie 222
- horror movie 127
- ftv 143
- ftv horror 79

           ” - emertens
 
33.
Svengali (1931)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  
Through hypnotism and telepathic mind control, a sinister music maestro controls the singing voice, but not the heart, of the woman he loves. (81 mins.)
Director: Archie Mayo
“ Seen on April the 9th, 2013 (Day 99: Tuesday)

This review contains spoilers
A rather odd movie. A blend of horror, comedy and drama, that didn't really work for me. John Barrymore plays a musician with the ability to hypnotize. He gives a very good performance, but his make-up, with hooked nose and pointy beard is old-fashioned and caricatured.
At first he resembles a Fagin-like character (Oliver Twist), a smart-mouthed bummer, dirty, always broke, but with a lot of pompous manners. There's a rather extended scene at the beginning of the movie, where two Englishmen trick Svengali into getting a bath (something he didn't have for years). Obviously this was meant for comic relief, however towards the end the movie swaps to rather serious drama. I thought it shared some similarity with "The Phantom of the Opera". Svengali manages to hold a female protégé under his hypnotic powers for years. She becomes a widely acclaimed opera singer. But eventually Svengali collapses, physically completely "drained". When he dies, she does too. something very rare in old horror movies. Even in pre-code horror flicks. (Nosferatu comes to mind)

Some of the sets are amazing. Sometimes even a bit like the German expressionistic movies from the 1920s. The camera work is quite remarkable too. There's a beautiful shot, where the cam pulls back from an extreme close-up of Svengali, right through the window out into the night. I wonder how they did this. It's really an unusual shot.
There are also a couple of impressive creepy shots of Barrymore wearing lenses, so it looks like his eyes don't have pupils.
Since it is a 1931 movie, there isn't a music score to provide mood/tension/atmosphere.


6.5-8.5/10

- movie 223
- horror movie 128
- ftv 144
- ftv horror 80

           ” - emertens
 
34.
Waxworks (1924)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  
The owner of a Waxmuseum needs for three of his models stories to be told to the audience. For that reason he has hired a writer... (65 mins.)
“ Seen on April the 9th, 2013 (Day 99: Tuesday)



6.5-9/10

- movie 224
- horror movie 129
- ftv 145
- ftv horror 81

           ” - emertens
 
35.
The Bat (1926)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  
A masked criminal who dresses like a giant bat terrorizes the guests at an old house rented by a mystery writer. (86 mins.)
“ Seen on April the 9th, 2013 (Day 99: Tuesday)



7-9/10

- movie 225
- horror movie 130
- ftv 146
- ftv horror 82

           ” - emertens
 
36.
The Vampire Bat (1933)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.7/10 X  
When corpses drained of blood begin to show up in a European village, vampirism is suspected to be responsible. (65 mins.)
Director: Frank Strayer
“ Seen on April the 10th, 2013 (Day 100: Wednesday)



7-8.5/10

- movie 226
- horror movie 131
- ftv 147
- ftv horror 83

           ” - emertens
 
37.
The Walking Dead (1936)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  
After hapless pianist and ex-con John Elman is framed for murder, he is resurrected by a scientist after his execution. (66 mins.)
Director: Michael Curtiz
“ Seen on April the 10th, 2013 (Day 100: Wednesday)



8.5-10/10

- movie 227
- horror movie 132
- ftv 148
- ftv horror 84

           ” - emertens
 
38.
The Bells (1926)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  
An innkeeper murders a wealthy guest to pay off his debt, but his conscience will not allow him to get away with the crime so easily. (68 mins.)
Director: James Young
“ Seen on April the 10th, 2013 (Day 100: Wednesday)
Beware: Spoilers

This movie starts really fine. A clearly build story, although a tad clichéd, with a fine pacing. But I have to agree with some of the imdb user reviews, which state that the ending is rather a let-down. At the beginning of the movie Barrymore seems to present the protagonist (a kind and friendly man, whose only sorrow is his financial dept, the result of his generosity), halfway through it swaps -very unexpectedly- to the opposite (on Christmas Eve he kills one of his customers (a stranger in town)). Until this point it's all just fine. I like these prota-/antagonist mix-ups. The build-up is very consistent, and the pacing is perfect. But towards the end the movie slows down. The focus is now on Barrymore's tormented conscience. The absolute ending is quite silly. Barrymore start to pray to a little statue of Marie, the ghost of his victim grants him peace, and Barrymore dies...

7.5-8.5/10

- movie 228
- horror movie 133
- ftv 149
- ftv horror 85

           ” - emertens
 
39.
The Son of Kong (1933)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  
The men who captured the giant ape King Kong return to Skull Island and find his likewise gigantic but far more friendly son. (70 mins.)
“ Seen on April the 10th, 2013 (Day 100: Wednesday)

Beware: Spoilers
This is a fantastic movie! Don't let the pessimists put you off because it's not as great as "King Kong" This is one of the better dinosaur/adventure movies out there.

8-9.5/10

- movie 229
- horror movie 134
- ftv 150
- ftv horror 86

           ” - emertens
 
40.
Fährmann Maria (1936)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  
A beautiful young drifter comes to a small village and battles Death itself to save the man she loves. (85 mins.)
Director: Frank Wysbar
“ Seen on April the 11th, 2013 (Day 101: Thursday)

Aka: Ferryman Maria.

7.5-8.5/10

- movie 230
- horror movie 135
- ftv 151
- ftv horror 87

           ” - emertens
 
41.
The Wind (1928)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  
A frail young woman from the east moves in with her cousin in the west, where she causes tension within the family and is slowly driven mad. (95 mins.)
Director: Victor Seastrom
“ Seen on April the 11th, 2013 (Day 101: Thursday)



8-9.5/10

- movie 231
- horror movie 136
- ftv 152
- ftv horror 88

           ” - emertens
 
42.
Black Magic (1944)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.0/10 X  
Charlie searches for a murderer amidst numerous ghosts conjured up by a strange variety of spiritualists and occultists. (67 mins.)
Director: Phil Rosen
“ Seen on April the 11th, 2013 (Day 101: Thursday)

Although it still has some entertaining values, compared to the Charlie Chan movie I saw a couple of days ago (Charlie Chan's Secret) it's clearly inferior. The sets are cheap and the camera work is narrowed down to just the elementary. Most of the actors give amateurish performances. But Toler and Moreland are agreeable. As is the score.
The premise of the story is rather interesting. During a séance, one of the attendees is shot, while holding hands. Although the body has a clear bullet wound, the bullet itself has disappeared. It turns out, a bullet of frozen blood was used, shot out of cigar-case shaped pistol. A fake hand was used during the séance, which is a bit far-fetched, in my opinion..

6-7/10

- movie 232
- horror movie 137
- ftv 153
- ftv horror 89

           ” - emertens
 
43.
The Uninvited (1944)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  
A composer and his sister discover that the reason they are able to purchase a beautiful gothic seacoast mansion very cheaply is the house's unsavory past. (99 mins.)
Director: Lewis Allen
“ Seen on April the 12th, 2013 (Day 102: Friday)


8-9.5/10

- movie 233
- horror movie 138
- ftv 153
- ftv horror 89

           ” - emertens
 
44.
Warning Shadows (1923)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.0/10 X  
During a dinner, given by a wealthy baron and his wive, attended by four of her suitors in a 19th century German manor... (90 mins.)
Director: Arthur Robison
“ Seen on April the 12th, 2013 (Day 102: Friday)

Aka: Warning Shadows - A Nocturnal Hallucination

This one didn't do it for me. The basic premise seems a reasonable device for a good movie, but it didn't work out that way at all.
A shadow-player gives a performance during a party and shows his audience their shortcomings with his play. Instead of presenting a rather mixed group of people, we get one jealous husband, an unfaithful wife and four(!) guys who try to seduce her (and always together).
If I'm not mistaken, this movie is described as the pinnacle of expressionism and a lot of reviewers are quite lyrical about the use of shadows. In either case it comes to me as a missed opportunity. It all seems quite mediocre to me. When I have to name a movie that blends a dreamworld with someone actual daily sorrows, I think of "Sherlock Jr." (1924), "The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari" (1920) or even Vampyr (1932) (just to name a few well-known examples)
The pacing is horrible, the story totally uninteresting and the acting rather week, except perhaps for Gustav von Wangenheim (Hutter in Nosferatu) and Fritz Rasp (already type-casted as a mean sadist).
The sets were really not that interesting. The use of shadows was quite tame, especially when you keep in mind that this movie actually provides an opportunity to explore this element in all its possible extremes.

The score provided by the Kino release was quite good.

5-7.5/10

- movie 234
- horror movie 139
- ftv 154
- ftv horror 90

           ” - emertens
 
45.
Vampyr (1932)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  
A drifter obsessed with the supernatural stumbles upon an inn where a severely ill adolescent girl is slowly becoming a vampire. (83 mins.)
Director: Carl Th. Dreyer
“ Seen on April the 13th, 2013 (Day 103: Saturday)


9.5-10/10

- movie 235
- horror movie 140
- ftv 154
- ftv horror 90

           ” - emertens
 
46.
The Headless Horseman (1922)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.1/10 X  
The village of Sleepy Hollow is getting ready to greet the new schoolteacher, Ichabod Crane, who is coming from New York... (68 mins.)
“ Seen on April the 13th, 2013 (Day 103: Saturday)

The other reviewers are a bit harsh on this movie, I think. So it's not a cinematic masterpiece... It looks rather cheap and simplistic. Nevertheless the story of Ichabod Crane is solidly and clear brought to the screen. The pacing is rather decent. And the humorous elements did work for me.


6-7/10

- movie 236
- horror movie 141
- ftv 155
- ftv horror 91

           ” - emertens
 
47.
The Mad Genius (1931)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  
A crippled man finds a boy and vows to make him a great dancer. (81 mins.)
Director: Michael Curtiz
“ Seen on April the 13th, 2013 (Day 103: Saturday)


8.5-9.5/10

- movie 237
- horror movie 142
- ftv 156
- ftv horror 92

           ” - emertens
 
48.
Maniac (1934)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 3.4/10 X  
A former vaudevillian gifted at impersonation assists a mad scientist in reanimating corpses and soon goes mad himself. (51 mins.)
Director: Dwain Esper
“ Seen on April the 14th, 2013 (Day 104: Sunday)


1-2.5/10

- movie 238
- horror movie 143
- ftv 157
- ftv horror 93

           ” - emertens
 
49.
The Inheritance (1947)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  
Following her father's death, a British teen-aged heiress goes to live with her guardian uncle who is broke and scheming to murder his niece for her vast inheritance. (103 mins.)
Director: Charles Frank
“ Seen on April the 14th, 2013 (Day 104: Sunday)


8-9/10

- movie 239
- horror movie 144
- ftv 158
- ftv horror 94

           ” - emertens
 
50.
Charlie Chan in Honolulu (1938)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
While Charlie is distracted with the birth of his first grandchild, son Jimmy impersonates his father in order to investigate a murder aboard a freighter in the harbor. (67 mins.)
“ Seen on April the 14th, 2013 (Day 104: Sunday)


7-8.5/10

- movie 240
- horror movie 145
- ftv 159
- ftv horror 95

           ” - emertens
 
51.
Charlie Chan at Treasure Island (1939)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  
Charlie's investigation of a phony psychic during the 1939 World Exposition on San Francisco's Treasure Island leads him to expose a suicide as murder. (74 mins.)
Director: Norman Foster
“ Seen on April the 15th, 2013 (Day 105: Monday)


7-8/10

- movie 241
- horror movie 146
- ftv 160
- ftv horror 96

           ” - emertens
 
52.
The Flesh Eaters (1964)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.0/10 X  
A group of young adults trapped on a desert island find the water inhabited by a violent form of flesh-eating organisms. (87 mins.)
Director: Jack Curtis
“ Seen on April the 15th, 2013 (Day 105: Monday)


9-10/10

- movie 242
- horror movie 147
- ftv 160
- ftv horror 96

           ” - emertens
 
53.
Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (1920)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.0/10 X  
Dr. Henry Jekyll experiments with scientific means of revealing the hidden, dark side of man and releases a murderer from within himself. (49 mins.)
“ Seen on April the 15th, 2013 (Day 105: Monday)


7.5-9/10

- movie 243
- horror movie 148
- ftv 161
- ftv horror 97

           ” - emertens
 
54.
The Mask of Fu Manchu (1932)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  
Englishmen race to find the tomb of Genghis Khan before Fu Manchu does. (68 mins.)
Director: Charles Brabin
“ Seen on April the 16th, 2013 (Day 106: Tuesday)

Clearly pre-code. Sometimes very campy. Extremely uneven. Astonishing bad performances. A lot of memorable scenes, but also a lot of unintentional laughs. And oh yes. like several other reviewers already stated: Charles Starrett was hot.

On average: not at all good.


2.5-7/10

- movie 244
- horror movie 149
- ftv 162
- ftv horror 98

           ” - emertens
 
55.
Curse of the Demon (1957)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  
American professor John Holden arrives in London for a parapsychology conference, only to find himself investigating the mysterious actions of Devil-worshiper Julian Karswell. (95 mins.)
“ Seen on April the 16th, 2013 (Day 106: Tuesday)




9-10/10

- movie 245
- horror movie 150
- ftv 162
- ftv horror 98

           ” - emertens
 
56.
Maciste in Hell (1925)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.0/10 X  
The devil takes Maciste down to hell in an attempt to corrupt and ruin his morality. (95 mins.)
Director: Guido Brignone
“ Seen on April the 16th, 2013 (Day 106: Tuesday)

Well this was like watching "Hercules in Hell". A curious omen for the crap-load of Grade-Z sword-and-sandal flicks Italy was going to produce, a couple of decades ahead. Like its offspring is high on special effects, but low on artistic values. And to me: rather low on entertainment as well.
The story is pretty lame. The English intertitles are - unintendedly as I presume - hilariously ridiculous.
Sometimes it almost looked like a modern-day spoof of a 1920s movie. Why were the demons at the beginning of the movie wearing fake top-hats? One would assume, it wouldn't be much of a problem to find real ones in the 1920s....
If only Maciste would have looked a bit more like Steve Reeves..

4-7/10

- movie 246
- horror movie 151
- ftv 163
- ftv horror 99

           ” - emertens
 
57.
The Testament of Dr. Mabuse (1933)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  
A new crime wave grips the city and all clues seem to lead to the nefarious Dr. Mabuse, even though he has been imprisoned in a mental asylum for nearly a decade. (122 mins.)
Director: Fritz Lang
“ Seen on April the 16th, 2013 (Day 106: Tuesday)

Very impressive, but weird Krimi, that sometimes flirts with the supernatural. A lot of memorable moments. Very beautifully shot, although most of the time there's very little camera movement. The pacing is rather uneven and the actors sometimes very hammy, which slows down the speed even more. Especially Kent's girlfriend (what's her name again?) gives a pretty mediocre performance.

7.5-9/10

- movie 247
- horror movie 152
- ftv 164
- ftv horror 100

           ” - emertens
 
58.
The Phantom of the Opera (1925)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  
A mad, disfigured composer seeks love with a lovely young opera singer. (93 mins.)
Director: Rupert Julian
“ Seen on April the 17th, 2013 (Day 107: Wednesday)


9-10/10

- movie 248
- horror movie 153
- ftv 164
- ftv horror 100

           ” - emertens
 
59.
The Monster (1925)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  
A meek clerk who doubles as an amateur detective investigates some very strange goings-on at a remote mental sanitarium. (86 mins.)
Director: Roland West
“ Seen on April the 17th, 2013 (Day 107: Wednesday)


6-8.5/10

- movie 249
- horror movie 154
- ftv 165
- ftv horror 101

           ” - emertens
 
60.
The Mummy's Curse (1944)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  
An irrigation project in the rural bayous of Louisiana unearths living mummy Kharis, who was buried in quicksand twenty-five years earlier. (60 mins.)
Director: Leslie Goodwins
“ Seen on April the 17th, 2013 (Day 107: Wednesday)


4-6/10

- movie 250
- horror movie 155
- ftv 166
- ftv horror 102

           ” - emertens
 
61.
The Mystery of Edwin Drood (1935)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  
An opium-addicted choirmaster develops an obsession for a beautiful young girl and will not stop short of murder in order to have her. (87 mins.)
Director: Stuart Walker
“ Seen on April the 18th, 2013 (Day 108: Thursday)


6.5-8.5/10

- movie 251
- horror movie 156
- ftv 167
- ftv horror 103

           ” - emertens
 
62.
Seven Footprints to Satan (1929)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  
A young man of society wants to make an expedition to Africa, but his fiancée asks him for help about... (60 mins.)
“ Seen on April the 19th, 2013 (Day 109: Friday)

Wonderful wacky horror comedy. Sadly the print I've seen desperately needs to be restored. And again an awful totally inappropriate score was added.
The story is an on-going parade of all different kind of mysterious and spooky things. A secret cult, a brotherhood, a sinister ruler named Satan, a ball-masque where all the guys are dressed in black robes as some sort of Ku Klux Klan members. Orgy like parties. a pock-marked cripple named Spider, a wolfman-like professor called Moriarty, a professor called Wrede (cruel in Dutch), a creepy mystic Oriental, a gorilla, a dwarf, an androgynous servant, a Sméagol like starved hostage and a whole bunch of femmes fatales. Secret rooms, secret doorways, coffins, a car with steel-plate-barricaded windows, a rare emerald jewel. It all goes on and on.
You know how it ends, but it's a lot of fun. And if I'm not mistaken, a lot of this stuff wasn't a cliché at all in 1929.

7-9/10

- movie 252
- horror movie 157
- ftv 168
- ftv horror 104

           ” - emertens
 
63.
Revolt of the Zombies (1936)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 3.2/10 X  
An international expedition is sent into Cambodia to destroy an ancient formula that turns men into zombies. (65 mins.)
Director: Victor Halperin
“ Seen on April the 19th, 2013 (Day 109: Friday)


2.5-5/10

- movie 253
- horror movie 158
- ftv 169
- ftv horror 105

           ” - emertens
 
64.
The Lodger (1927)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
A landlady suspects her new lodger is the madman killing women in London. (68 mins.)
“ Seen on April the 20th, 2013 (Day 110: Saturday)


10/10

- movie 254
- horror movie 159
- ftv 170
- ftv horror 106

           ” - emertens
 
65.
Torture Ship (1939)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 3.1/10 X  
A mad scientist performs experiments on "the criminal mind" on captured criminals on board his private ship. (57 mins.)
Director: Victor Halperin
“ Seen on April the 20th, 2013 (Day 110: Saturday)


2-3/10

- movie 255
- horror movie 160
- ftv 171
- ftv horror 107

           ” - emertens
 
66.
The Witch's Mirror (1962)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  
A husband murders his wife, and years later her ghost emerges from a witch's mirror to take her revenge. (75 mins.)
Director: Chano Urueta
“ Seen on April the 20th, 2013 (Day 110: Saturday)


4-6.5/10

- movie 256
- horror movie 161
- ftv 172
- ftv horror 108

           ” - emertens
 
67.
The Last Performance (1929)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  
A middle-aged magician is in love with his beautiful young assistant. She, on the other hand, is in love with the magician's young protege, who turns out to be a bum and a thief. (60 mins.)
Director: Paul Fejos
“ Seen on April the 21st, 2013 (Day 111: Sunday)


10/10

- movie 257
- horror movie 162
- ftv 173
- ftv horror 109

           ” - emertens
 
68.
Them! (1954)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
The earliest atomic tests in New Mexico cause common ants to mutate into giant man-eating monsters that threaten civilization. (94 mins.)
Director: Gordon Douglas
“ Seen on April the 21st, 2013 (Day 111: Sunday)


9-9.5/10

- movie 258
- horror movie 163
- ftv 173
- ftv horror 109

           ” - emertens
 
69.
The Eyes of the Mummy (1918)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.5/10 X  
A girl is kidnapped and held captive in an ancient Egyptian temple. She is rescued and flees to England, but soon finds that her mysterious captor is still haunting her. (63 mins.)
Director: Ernst Lubitsch
“ Seen on April the 21st, 2013 (Day 111: Sunday)


7-9.5/10

- movie 259
- horror movie 164
- ftv 174
- ftv horror 110

           ” - emertens
 
70.
The Cat and the Canary (1927)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
Relatives of an eccentric millionaire gather in his spooky mansion on the 20th anniversary of his death for the reading of his will. (108 mins.)
Director: Paul Leni
“ Seen on April the 22st, 2013 (Day 112: Monday)


9-9.5/10

- movie 260
- horror movie 165
- ftv 174
- ftv horror 110

           ” - emertens
 
71.
Thirteen Women (1932)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  
Ursula plots to murder 12 women with her supernatural powers. (73 mins.)
“ Seen on April the 22st, 2013 (Day 112: Monday)


8-9.5/10

- movie 261
- horror movie 166
- ftv 175
- ftv horror 111

           ” - emertens
 
72.
Psycho (1960)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  
A Phoenix secretary embezzles $40,000 from her employer's client, goes on the run, and checks into a remote motel run by a young man under the domination of his mother. (109 mins.)
“ Seen on April the 22st, 2013 (Day 112: Monday)


9.5-10/10

- movie 262
- horror movie 167
- ftv 175
- ftv horror 111

           ” - emertens
 
73.
Condemned to Live (1935)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.9/10 X  
After a series of unsolved murders, a man finds out that his mother was bitten by a vampire bat during her pregnancy, and he believes that he may be the vampire committing the murders. (67 mins.)
“ Seen on April the 22st, 2013 (Day 112: Monday)

Beware: Spoilers!

If one would cut out the lines in which someone tells "how good the professor is", the script would've been shortened by a half. The professor is of course "the Fiend", a bloodsucker who's capable of walking around in the daylight (although tormented by headaches), but changes into a vampire as soon as all the lights have gone out. I'm serious. There's a laughable scene towards the end of the movie, where the female lead blows out candles, one at the time, to ease the prof's headache. There's still some light left from the moon, but "Oh, those darn clouds!"
I have no idea why the professor is a professor. It's of no use to the story. The prof has been a vampire all his life. His mother was bitten by an African vampire bat, earlier during the day she gave birth to him. The condemned-to-live professor has never suspected anything about his "second nature" throughout his whole life, although his older-but-same-age(?) friend, has known about it all the time.
Bad performances all around, but Catrina is the far worst. Like a weird pre-incarnation of Pirate World's Thumbelina.
I thought the movie was pretty camp too. And yes indeed, I mean: in a gay way. The scene where the prof and his friend are holding hands comes to mind. And a couple of effeminate servants. Then there's the dedication of the hunchback towards the prof, whom he constantly refers to as "Master". They are protecting each other full-heartedly throughout the movie (apparently the hunchback was one of his first victims.) While during the first part of the movie, the villagers are convinced a bat is the cause of all the killings (even when they are aware of the fact that the bodies have been carried around), during the second part the hunchback is hunted down, as the suspected "fiend".
Weird flick.

2.5-4/10

- movie 263
- horror movie 168
- ftv 176
- ftv horror 112

           ” - emertens
 
74.
Chloe, Love Is Calling You (1934)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 3.6/10 X  
A black voodoo priestess comes out of the Louisians swamps to take revenge on the white plantation owner she believes killed her husband. (62 mins.)
Director: Marshall Neilan
“ Seen on April the 22st, 2013 (Day 112: Monday)

Oh my, this one was pretty bad. It's about a girl who's frustrated, because her mother might be a black woman. So she thinks... The movie ends happily when solidly is proven that she's a full-blooded white human. Besides a lot of awful racism, some animals are killed and/or mistreated. One of the reviewers points out that the alligator clearly was dead already. Well sadly not, I'm afraid. The alligator clearly was pretty much alive. At least before the fight.
So far the content. There isn't much else noteworthy to mention.
It's all done most poorly. Just name it - and they used as much as possible to bore the hell out of the audience.


1/10

- movie 264
- horror movie 169
- ftv 177
- ftv horror 113

           ” - emertens
 
75.
The Phantom (1931)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.4/10 X  
A group of people are stalked by a masked killer in an old mansion. (62 mins.)
Director: Alvin J. Neitz
“ Seen on April the 22st, 2013 (Day 112: Monday)

The beginning of this movie remembered me of a Laurel and Hardy short called: "Do Detectives Think". Both more or less started with an escaped convict who's out for revenge. In case of "The Phantom" the escape is brought very vividly to the screen (trains and planes and stuff). After this introduction to the premise of the plot, the first part of the movie plays at the home of the Phantom's "prey", a local district attorney. It shows many similarities to "The Bat" (and its remake "The Bat Whispers"). Halfway through the place of action shifts to a nearby insane asylum. So the audience is treated to two "old dark houses" for the price of one. It doesn't double the fun. But that's probably because it isn't a very well-made movie.

4-6/10

- movie 265
- horror movie 170
- ftv 178
- ftv horror 114

           ” - emertens
 
76.
House of Mystery (1934)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.0/10 X  
An ancient curse and a killer ape are contained inside an old dark mansion. (62 mins.)
Director: William Nigh
“ Seen on April the 22nd, 2013 (Day 112: Monday)

After watching three pieces of crap cinema this movie unexpectedly was a real relief. A nice solid story, that unfolded in an easy to follow, rather logical way. An amusing bunch of characters. Some comedy bits that really worked. Pretty decent movie.

6-8/10

- movie 266
- horror movie 171
- ftv 179
- ftv horror 115

           ” - emertens
 
77.
Freaks (1932)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  
A circus' beautiful trapeze artist agrees to marry the leader of side-show performers, but his deformed friends discover she is only marrying him for his inheritance. (64 mins.)
Director: Tod Browning
“ Seen on April the 23rd, 2013 (Day 113: Tuesday)

For a long time I've avoided this movie. And now I've seen it, I hope I'll never have to experience this ordeal again. Browning may have been an important pioneer in the development of horror as a separate film genre, he definitely isn't a director as good as for instance Murnau, Whale or Hitchcock. When talking about the technical or aesthetic aspects, most of this movie is mediocre at best, while the drama is pretty much of a bore to sit through.
But the worst element of course is the vulgar exploitation content. I found it almost unbearable to watch. This is just not my cup of tea. On television I avoid shockumentaries like the plague, especially when it's about nasty illnesses. And if there's an accident in the streets, you won't find me as one of the bystanders. It's all gross vulgar sensationalism. Freaks is a tasteless, sick exploitation film.


1-6/10

- movie 267
- horror movie 172
- ftv 180
- ftv horror 116

           ” - emertens
 
78.
The Face at the Window (1939)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  
Set in France in 1880. A series of murders is attributed to a Wolf Man. (70 mins.)
Director: George King
“ Seen on April the 23rd, 2013 (Day 113: Tuesday)

My second encounter this month with Tod Slaughter. He doesn't impress at all. That's actually worse than "just" showing some bad acting capabilities. I find him incredible uninteresting and forgettable. Nevertheless he has achieved to pick up the status of a cult horror actor, which draws some peculiar attention to his presence in both of the movies I've seen.
This one is a bit more enjoyable than Sweeney Todd. Although the first part was rather irritating. Lucio del Gardo (Slaughter) has put up a cunning scheme to marry the daughter of a bank manager. The big victim is a young clerk, the girl's actual lover, who's wrongfully accused of robbing the bank, a killing spree that has hit Paris, and of being the wolf-howling face at the window.
The end of the movie involves a scientist who's capable of reanimating dead corpses, to testify their last experiences before they died.

5.5-7/10

- movie 268
- horror movie 173
- ftv 181
- ftv horror 117

           ” - emertens
 
79.
Supernatural (1933)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  
A serial black widow murderess returns to life in the body of a young woman to exact revenge on a former lover, a phony spiritualist who betrayed her. (65 mins.)
Director: Victor Halperin
“ Seen on April the 23rd, 2013 (Day 113: Tuesday)

I almost can't believe that this movie was directed by the same guy who was going to resume his oeuvre with a couple of low grade stinkers as 'Revolt of the Zombies' and 'Torture Ship'.
Supernatural is a highly original, exciting movie. Some details could've been worked out a bit more decent. A few scenes, mainly at the beginning of the movie, are a bit hampered by some mediocre cinematography and editing. But most of this movie is energetic and vibrantly fresh. A story with a couple of unexpected twists, and with several amusing, original supporting characters. There's some very good use of atmospheric tension music.

7-9/10

- movie 269
- horror movie 174
- ftv 182
- ftv horror 118

           ” - emertens
 
80.
Brokeback Mountain (2005)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  
The story of a forbidden and secretive relationship between two cowboys, and their lives over the years. (134 mins.)
Director: Ang Lee
“ Seen on April the 24rd, 2013 (Day 114: Wednesday)



10/10

- movie 270
- horror movie 174
- ftv 182
- ftv horror 118

           ” - emertens
 
81.
The Man Who Cheated Life (1926)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  
For Balduin, going out to beer parties with his fellow students and fighting out disputes at the tip of the sword have lost their charms... (110 mins.)
Director: Henrik Galeen
“ Seen on April the 24th, 2013 (Day 114: Wednesday)

A bit disappointing remake. The premise of this story is very potential. However, instead of making the most of it, it basically played within the same borders as the original. It would have been nice to focus a bit more on the weird experience of having no mirror image. Something that very likely is going to cause problems to keep hidden to your environment. It would also have been nice, to make the döppelganger a far more violent opponent.
Since a decade has past, technically the movie has "improved". The rescue from a horse scene and the haunting finale are the most impressive visually, for the chiaroscuro lighting, special effects and editing.

6-8/10

- movie 271
- horror movie 175
- ftv 183
- ftv horror 119

           ” - emertens
 
82.
The Haunted Castle (1921)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  
In the castle Vogeloed, a few aristocrats are awaiting baroness Safferstätt. But first count Oetsch invites himself.... (75 mins.)
Director: F.W. Murnau
“ Seen on April the 24th, 2013 (Day 114: Wednesday)

Beautifully shot, psychological drama, with a few creepy scenes. Thematically it's very recognizable as a movie by Murnau (the suffocation of goodness, the temptation of evil, guilt and regret after the crime, the innocent accused outcast, the abject and vulgar attitude of the community.)

7.5-8.5/10

- movie 272
- horror movie 176
- ftv 184
- ftv horror 120

           ” - emertens
 
83.
The Magician (1926)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  
A magician/alchemist, seeking to create life, finds that he needs the "blood of a virgin" to continue his experiments. He sends out his dwarf assistant to pick out the right girl. (83 mins.)
Director: Rex Ingram
“ Seen on April the 25th, 2013 (Day 115: Thursday)


9-10/10

- movie 273
- horror movie 177
- ftv 185
- ftv horror 121

           ” - emertens
 
84.
The Return of Doctor X (1939)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.7/10 X  
A hotshot reporter and a young doctor team up to investigate a series of grisly murders and a mysterious sample of synthetic blood. (62 mins.)
Director: Vincent Sherman
“ Seen on April the 25th, 2013 (Day 115: Thursday)


7-9/10

- movie 274
- horror movie 178
- ftv 186
- ftv horror 122

           ” - emertens
 
85.
Destiny (1921)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  
When a woman's fiancé disappears, Death gives her three chances to save him from his fate. (114 mins.)
Director: Fritz Lang
“ Seen on April the 25th, 2013 (Day 115: Thursday)


8-10/10

- movie 275
- horror movie 179
- ftv 187
- ftv horror 123

           ” - emertens
 
86.
Salomé (1922)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  
Salome, the daughter of Herodias, seduces her step-father/uncle Herod, governor of Judea, with a salacious dance... (72 mins.)
Director: Charles Bryant
“ Seen on April the 26th, 2013 (Day 116: Friday)


3.5-6.5/10

- movie 276
- horror movie 180
- ftv 188
- ftv horror 124

           ” - emertens
 
87.
Satan Triumphant (1917)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  
(87 mins.)
“ Seen on April the 26th, 2013 (Day 116: Friday)

A film in two parts, both of which the ending has been lost...
I found the story rather weird and because of the religious sentimentality also a bit uncomfortable. The devil tries to lure his victims into evilness, by the use of art (apparently art is evil...) A piano piece called "Hymn Triumphant" seems to be his primary tool. But there's also a painting, of his human appearance, that entraps people into having bad habits. The movie never explains the choice of devil's victims. In the first part it's an overly religious pastor called Talnoks. Since that implies a contradiction it seems a logic target. But in the second part (that plays a couple of decades later) the devil aims his arrows on Talnoks' son, young famous piano player.
The movie really seems to enclose some sort of message, but its nature isn't at all clear to me. Maybe this is caused by the missing endings...
This 1917 movie showed some very solid film making. The actors gave a very discerningly performance. Especially the guy who played the devil, did a very good job - therefore continuously attracting all my attention, but nevertheless most entertaining to watch.
The copy I've seen had a most obnoxious piano score applied. It's nice that it was especially played (written?) for this movie - it reacted to the action very clearly - but it sounded like someone was beating and pounding a very small cheap piano in a most invariable aggressive way.


6.5-8/10

- movie 277
- horror movie 181
- ftv 189
- ftv horror 125

           ” - emertens
 
88.
The Human Monster (1939)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  
Insurance agent-physician collects on policies of men murdered by a disfigured resident of the home for the blind where he acts as doctor-on-call. (76 mins.)
Director: Walter Summers
“ Seen on April the 27th, 2013 (Day 117: Saturday)



5-6.5/10

- movie 278
- horror movie 182
- ftv 190
- ftv horror 126

           ” - emertens
 
89.
Midnight Faces (1926)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.5/10 X  
A young man inherits a mansion in a Florida swamp from an uncle he never knew he had. When he, his assistant... (55 mins.)
Director: Bennett Cohen
“ Seen on April the 27th, 2013 (Day 117: Saturday)



6-7.5/10

- movie 279
- horror movie 183
- ftv 191
- ftv horror 127

           ” - emertens
 
90.
A Daughter of Destiny (1928)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  
(108 mins.)
Director: Henrik Galeen
“ Seen on April the 27th, 2013 (Day 117: Saturday)

Decent movie, well-made. However I'm not much of a fan of the Alraune plot. I've already seen a movie before, based on the same story. But that one was equally lame. After all I'm a horror movie aficionado and the Alraune tale doesn't live up to its premise.
The movie starts pretty interesting about a loony scientist, who's determined to create human life, extracted from the mandrake root. But then the plot skips twenty years forward. Mandrake is now a beautiful but promiscuous woman, whose soul is empty. She's able to bring fortune, but to those who are trying to possess her, she brings bad luck. So what starts as a movie with some nice creepy visuals (the mandrake root has to be found during full moon, underneath a hanged man), ends in a casino at a roulette game table. So the suspense is narrowed down to a little ball that may-or-may-not fall into a red pocket of the wheel (in a black and white movie).


6.5-8.5/10

- movie 280
- horror movie 184
- ftv 192
- ftv horror 128

           ” - emertens
 
91.
The Penalty (1920)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  
A deformed criminal mastermind plans to loot the city of San Francisco as well as revenge himself on the doctor who mistakenly amputated his legs. (90 mins.)
Director: Wallace Worsley
“ Seen on April the 27th, 2013 (Day 117: Saturday)



9-10/10

- movie 281
- horror movie 185
- ftv 193
- ftv horror 129

           ” - emertens
 
92.
Strangers of the Evening (1932)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.2/10 X  
Bodies start mysteriously disappearing from the city morgue. An investigator tries to determine what is going on. (70 mins.)
“ Seen on April the 28th, 2013 (Day 118: Sunday)



3-5.5/10

- movie 282
- horror movie 186
- ftv 194
- ftv horror 130

           ” - emertens
 
93.
Kongo (1932)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  
This remake of West of Zanzibar made four years later tries to outdo the Lon Chaney original in morbidity... (86 mins.)
Director: William Cowen
“ Seen on April the 28th, 2013 (Day 118: Sunday)

I haven't seen the original yet, but this remake was pretty boring.
The direction was uneven, but for the most part mediocre. The performances were shallow and unremarkable. Especially Walter Huston lacked any form of the essential "charisma" needed for such a role. The dialogue was unintentionally corny. For me this was a pretty tough one to sit through. I don't get all the favorable reviews. Most of them seem to focus on some nasty aspects of the story as well as on some supposed-violent scenes. Well, there was so much talk in this snore-fest, it made the "nasty" topics of conversation fall completely flat. If there was any graphical violence, I must have missed it, when I blinked my eyes. (Although I do recall a scene where a guy gets kicked in the face, resulting in a trickle of blood running from his mouth. Well, if that makes a good movie to some people...)

3.5-6/10

- movie 283
- horror movie 187
- ftv 195
- ftv horror 131

           ” - emertens
 
94.
The Last Warning (1929)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  
A producer decides to reopen a theater, that had been closed five years previously when one of the actors was murdered during a performance... (89 mins.)
Director: Paul Leni
“ Seen on April the 28th, 2013 (Day 118: Sunday)


9-10/10

- movie 284
- horror movie 188
- ftv 195
- ftv horror 131

           ” - emertens
 
95.
The Drums of Jeopardy (1931)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.0/10 X  
A mad doctor is determined to take revenge on the family he believes is responsible for his daughter's death. (75 mins.)
Director: George B. Seitz
“ Seen on April the 28th, 2013 (Day 118: Sunday)

Warner Oland plays Dr. Boris Karlov. It wasn't a reference to Boris Karloff, the actor. Frankenstein would not yet be released for over half a year. The movie isn't very good, although not very bad either. It's more like an example of an average cheapo from the early 1930s - almost from the same month as Dracula. And good or bad, it still has some entertaining values. Karlov (Oland) is avenging his daughter's suicide, by killing off a Russian noble family. The "Drums of Jeopardy" is the name of necklace, a piece of the family's crown jewels. Each of Karlov's victims receives one of the "drums" prior to the moment of the murder.

5-6.5/10

- movie 285
- horror movie 189
- ftv 196
- ftv horror 132

           ” - emertens
 
96.
The Living Dead Man (1926)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  
Mathias Pascal, only son of a once rich family, marries beautiful Romalinda, who has a terrible mother-in-law... (170 mins.)
“ Seen on April the 28th, 2013 (Day 118: Sunday)


8.5-9.5/10

- movie 286
- horror movie 189
- ftv 197
- ftv horror 132

           ” - emertens
 
97.
The Mysterious Mr. Wong (1934)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.8/10 X  
Investigating a series of murders in Chinatown, wise-guy reporter Jason Barton is captured by the megalomaniacal Mr... (63 mins.)
Director: William Nigh
“ Seen on April the 29th, 2013 (Day 119: Monday)


4-5.5/10

- movie 287
- horror movie 190
- ftv 198
- ftv horror 133

           ” - emertens
 
98.
Phantom Ship (1935)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  
During a horrific storm at sea, the crew realizes that there is a murderer among them who is killing them off one by one. (80 mins.)
Director: Denison Clift
“ Seen on April the 29th, 2013 (Day 119: Monday)


6-8/10

- movie 288
- horror movie 191
- ftv 199
- ftv horror 134

           ” - emertens
 
99.
Shadow of Chinatown (1936)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.1/10 X  
Feature version of the 1936 serial "Shadow of Chinatown." (71 mins.)
Director: Bob Hill
“ Seen on April the 30th, 2013 (Day 120: Tuesday)


3-5/10

- movie 289
- horror movie 192
- ftv 200
- ftv horror 135

           ” - emertens
 
100.
Satan's Rhapsody (1917)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  
A Faustian tale about an old woman who makes a pact with Mephisto to regain her youth, in return she must stay away from love. After the deal she meets two brothers who fall in love with her. (55 mins.)
Director: Nino Oxilia
“ Seen on April the 30th, 2013 (Day 120: Tuesday)


7-9/10

- movie 290
- horror movie 193
- ftv 201
- ftv horror 136

           ” - emertens